Back on the 7th of December I wrote a blog https://safetyrisk.net/diamonds-are-safetys-best-friend/
On the 15th of December the AIHS announced ‘ our newest partner in championing workplace safety’ Milwaukee who had already been questioned about their manufacturing practices https://wisconsinwatch.org/2023/05/milwaukee-tool-gloves-chinese-prisoners/
In the discussion after it was posted on LinkedIn I was invited to continue the conversation, I agreed to do it online so all could comment, and meet for coffee.
‘ Matt Thorne lets share our positive, affirmative and helpful ideas for many to benefit, rather than few in private conversations? (Id love to catch up still…but I think the combination of critique and being constructive, together, would make the world a better place)’
The conversation dried up quickly.
The coffee never eventuated.
My phone call was never replied to.
These are challenges that are not insurmountable so I press on.
A further person entered the discussion informing me they had been a Gold Member of the AIHS previously, and for more money could purchase AIHS endorsement.
Ethics and Morality questions galore, this is the peak body for Safety in Australia.
I Quote the AIHS BoK:
‘This concept of the OHS professional as a moral agent is an important one because:
This moral motivation for their role has significant implications for safety professional practice within organizations. In a study of safety professional influence and practical agency, Daudigeos (2013) found that the ‘sense of moral duty to others in [safety] professionals’ has powerful implications for institutional processes as safety professionals often resort to unscrupulous and Machiavellian tactics in pursuit of their good intentions. (Provan et al., 2018, p. 29) ‘
5.3.3 Moral disengagement
Moral disengagement explains how it is possible for good people to behave unethically and to be able to live with themselves without feeling discomfort or distress (Martin, Kish- Gephart, & Detert, 2014). Such disengagement can occur when people separate their everyday ethics from their professional role and achieve ‘compartmentalisation’ (Breakey, Cadman & Sampford, 2015).10 The way we see, process and use information influences our ethical behaviour. Increasingly, the role of cognitive processes in our ethical conduct is the subject of behavioural science research. The theory of moral disengagement was introduced by Albert Bandura (Martin et al., 2014; Moore et al., 2012), who proposed that moral disengagement occurs through eight interrelated mechanisms (Table 2).
When one applies the AIHS BoK on https://www.ohsbok.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/38.3.-Ethics-and-professional-practice.pdf to the Board and Management it raises more questions.
The AIHS has also rejected my membership of AIHS SA Branch on a LinkedIn page because I am not a financial member! WOW!
When one delves further into the history of the AIHS/SIA (a significant part of Culture) and we discover the Ballarat Mafia and the Purple Circle, states organisations leaving, dissolution of committees, ready access of branches to their own membership lists and more.
To paraphrase Groucho Marx ’The AIHS is a great Institution, but who want to be in an Institution?’
A Deontological Ethic has gotten the SIA/AIHS to this current position, is it happy here?
Are Members actively engaged?
How does it want to communicate, more silences?
What sort of Culture is the AIHS trying to create?