Our Company:  Sustainability

Sustainability
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Colgate People
Making Occupational Health and Safety a Top Priority

Colgate continues to make health and safety a top priority in all facilities. Our corporate Environmental, Occupational Health & Safety (EOHS) mission is to develop and maintain a culture that produces world-class health and safety performance. In addition to our own comprehensive programs, Colgate collaborates with governments and safety organizations to continually enhance its knowledge in changing business and technology environments.

Colgate has a long-term goal of zero lost workday accidents and zero recordable accidents. Each year, we set interim goals to reach this goal.

Graph From 1990 to 2009, Colgate reduced the total recordable accident rate by over 95% and improved its lost workday accident rate by approximately 98%. Click to enlarge.

We have made considerable progress in several areas so far. From 2001 through 2009, LWA were reduced from 294 to 50.

As in many previous years, Colgate was among the top 25 performing companies in safety when compared to all other companies who benchmark in industry associations in 2008.

EOHS Guiding Principles
Colgate's commitment to integrate EOHS into the corporate culture starts with senior management and is implemented at every level. Each Colgate facility is responsible for implementing global safety and health standards and undergoes comprehensive EOHS reviews and audits against these standards. The Company has also established a Global EOHS Council comprised of key people in each region who oversee these programs and are responsible for implementing and improving the effectiveness of the EOHS programs.

Colgate also has made progress in communicating and learning from each other's experiences to prevent similar accidents in the future. We focus on root cause analysis to help us find the core underlying issues affecting safety performance. At regular regional meetings, facility leaders discuss recent unwanted events and analyze root causes. The Global Council is kept informed of the discussions, and results are communicated to every facility worldwide.

Our results are achieved in part by continuously practicing our EOHS Guiding Principles. These principles were relaunched in 2009 within the Global Supply Chain organization and cascaded to the shop floor. As shown in the diagram at right, these principles foster a company culture that values people and their safety and focuses on three key elements, People, Leadership and Technology.

Colgate is especially proud of its hand safety campaign, which involve leaders, Colgate people and their families at every manufacturing site worldwide. Fun and educational events and activities, such as a children's art contest, reinforce the hand safety message while continually developing our safety culture.

Training is an important part of the Colgate program, and there are a number of courses within Colgate's global curriculum that address safety. In addition to traditional classroom courses, some courses are available through e-learning. Some courses are offered through an external training partner.

Safety Performance Recognition

To recognize and encourage safety performance, Colgate has internal awards programs presented to facilities that achieve outstanding health and safety records. The President's Awards for Safety Achievement recognize sites reaching time milestones without a lost workday injury or illness. In 2008, 12 sites were recognized for achieving over one million hours without a lost time accident, including one site which achieved over 15 million hours. Six sites were recognized for operating for over a year without a lost time accident, including one site with more than 20 years without a lost time accident.

Occupational Health

In the area of Occupational Health, encompassing Industrial Hygiene and Occupational Medicine, the Company has increased its focus on training and education for Colgate Occupational Health Professionals. We have extended the training requirements and e-learning programs to include Human Resources managers and generalists, all EOHS coordinators and health professionals who service our sites, but are not Colgate employees.

In addition, an Occupational Health team has been identified to support implementation of industrial hygiene programs around the Colgate world. This virtual team meets monthly to discuss issues and drive improvements in the program for each Division.

While we continue to make great progress in the area of employee safety, we recognize that there is always room for improvement and we are prepared to address the challenges ahead.

   

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