15 FAM 920 


(CT:OBO-81;   04-15-2019)
(Office of Origin:  OBO)

15 FAM 921  Designated Agency safety and health official (dasho)

(CT:OBO-43;   02-28-2014)

Executive Order 12196, as amended, required the Department of State to establish a Designated Agency Safety and Health Official (DASHO).  This individual is the Medical Director, Office of Medical Services (MED).  The DASHO assists the Secretary in coordinating the Department of State’s Safety and Occupational Health Program to meet Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)-related regulatory requirements.

15 fam 922  Safety, Health, and Environmental Management (SHEM) Director

(CT:OBO-43;   02-28-2014)

The Director of the Office of Safety, Health, and Environmental Management in the Directorate for Operations, Bureau of Overseas Buildings Operations (OBO/OPS/SHEM) oversees and directs the Department of State’s Safety, Occupational Health, and Environmental Management Program abroad.  Responsibilities of the SHEM Director:

(1)  Establishes policies, programs, and standards to assist Department of State organizations and posts to implement safety, occupational health, and environmental requirements;

(2)  Establishes record keeping and reporting requirements on accidents, illnesses, injuries, and environmental mishaps to ensure that accurate data are compiled and maintained as required by regulations;

(3)  Serves as the Department of State’s contact for safety, occupational health, and environmental health matters abroad, and as liaison on matters abroad with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s Office of Federal Agency Programs, the Department of Labor, the Environmental Protection Agency, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, and other agencies under chief-of-mission (COM) authority as necessary (occupational medicine is a responsibility of the Office of Health Services―see 15 FAM 925);

(4)  Resolves employee reports of alleged unsafe or unhealthful working and living conditions that cannot be resolved at post;

(5)  Conducts periodic audits of Department of State organizations and posts to assess compliance with the Department of State’s safety, occupational health, and environmental policies;

(6)  Conducts special studies to investigate and resolve safety, occupational health, and environmental issues or problems;

(7)  Reviews and coordinates matters related to safety, occupational health, and environment (as they relate to emissions, discharges, and disposal of hazardous materials and ambient environmental health conditions);

(8)  Provides an annual written assessment of the state of the Department of State’s SHEM program abroad to OBO senior management, including major accomplishments, and identification of additional program needs;

(9)  Coordinates and/or provides technical support required to enable Department of State posts abroad to meet safety, occupational health, and environmental requirements;

(10) Conducts environmental risk assessments of petroleum/chemical releases or leaks to evaluate risk factors utilizing established Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) protocols; reviews remediation plans; provides oversight to ensure compliance with requirements; and serves as a repository for assessment records required by Federal laws/standards;

(11) Establishes goals and objectives for reducing or eliminating occupational accidents, illnesses, injuries, and environmental mishaps;

(12) Prepares input to the annual report that the Designated Agency Safety and Health Official (DASHO) submits to the Secretary of Labor;

(13) Advises posts about regulations and standards to address specific safety, occupational health, or environmental problems;

(14) Investigates and resolves, in coordination with post, safety and occupational health incidents involving claims of discrimination due to participation in the safety and health program;

(15) Serves as a member of the Occupational Safety and Health Program Coordinating Committee;

(16) Analyzes, during the planning process, the safety, occupational health, and environmental issues of new Department of State projects abroad, including property acquisitions; provides project managers with information to address these issues; and monitors projects to ensure implementation;

(17) Appoints Class A mishap boards abroad (see 15 FAM 964), reviews board reports, and prepares an action memo with recommendations for issuance by the DASHO;

(18) Represents SHEM on the Bureau of Overseas Buildings Operations (OBO) Emergency Action Committee (EAC) and provides safety, occupational health, and environmental support to disaster assistance survey teams (DASTs) that are mobilized to respond to disasters affecting Department of State facilities abroad; and

(19) Collaborates with bureaus and other U.S. Government organizations as needed to ensure implementation of a comprehensive and coordinated safety and occupational health program for the Department of State.

15 FAM 923  Occupational Safety and health program coordinating committee

(CT:OBO-62;   03-19-2018)

This committee coordinates overall Department of State OSHA-related safety and occupational health activities.  The primary function of the committee is to coordinate a systematic process to further the Department of State’s safety and occupational health goals.  This includes the review of major programs and identification of issues that cut across lines of responsibility of Department of State offices/bureaus.  Regularly scheduled meetings will be held.  Committee standing members include the following:

(1)  Chairperson:  The Designated Agency Safety and Health Official (DASHO);

(2)  Director, Office of Safety, Health, and Environmental Management (OBO/OPS/SHEM);

(3)  Deputy Assistant Secretary for Operations (A/OPR);

(4)  Managing Director for Operations (OBO/OPS);

(5)  Chief, Occupational Health and Wellness (MED/CP/OHW);

(6)  Chief, Domestic Environmental and Safety Division (A/OPR/FMS/DESD); and

(7)  Medical Director, DASHO (MED).


(CT:OBO-43;   02-28-2014)

Assistant secretaries of the Department of State organizations listed below will ensure that safety, health, and environmental program requirements affecting posts and operations abroad are implemented.  These organizations must provide posts with required assistance and funding and coordinate with the SHEM Director, as appropriate:

(1)  European and Eurasian Affairs;

(2)  African Affairs;

(3)  East Asian and Pacific Affairs;

(4)  Western Hemisphere Affairs;

(5)  Near Eastern Affairs;

(6)  South and Central Asian Affairs; and

(7)  International Organization Affairs.


(CT:OBO-52;   06-07-2016)

In coordination with the SHEM Program, the Office of Medical Services (MED) provides:

(1)  Consultation with the SHEM Director on medical aspects of the SHEM Program abroad;

(2)  Medical evaluations for employees assigned to work requiring respirator use, enrolled in a post’s hearing conservation program, and employees who drive official vehicles (per 14 FAM 432);

(3)  Assessment and treatment of on-the-job emergency injuries and illnesses due to occupational accidents or exposures;

(4)  Employee referrals to private physicians and/or medical facilities for job-related injuries and illnesses;

(5)  Medical surveillance of hazardous occupational exposures;

(6)  Data collection and analysis of medical conditions resulting from occupational injuries and illnesses for use in workers compensation database analysis; and

(7)  Collaboration with Department of State organizations to ensure the systematic implementation of Federal safety and health requirements.


(CT:OBO-52;   06-07-2016)

OBO’s Director through the OBO Managing Directors:

(1)  Directs the fire protection program for Department of State buildings abroad (see 15 FAM 800), ensuring that:

(a)  Designs meet applicable fire, safety, and electrical safety code requirements and standards, including the most recent international building and fire codes;

(b)  Fire-safety features are installed correctly, tested, and functioning properly prior to occupying a new building;

(c)  Post employees receive periodic fire safety training;

(d)  Buildings abroad are routinely inspected for fire hazards;

(e)  Fire protection measures on OBO-managed construction sites are adequate; and

(f)   Fires are investigated to determine origin and cause, and assistance is provided to other bureaus or agencies for arson investigations;

(2)  Ensures that appropriate fire, safety, and health, and environmental policies and standards are applied as part of the following OBO activities:

(a)  Planning and design of new facilities and of renovations to existing facilities;

(b)  Maintenance or repair of existing facilities and major equipment; and

(c)  Construction of new facilities or renovations of existing facilities;

(3)  Ensures, to the extent practical, that facilities being considered for acquisition are examined for the presence of hazardous conditions or materials, and that hazards are abated or controlled before construction, renovation, or occupancy;

(4)  Provides engineering expertise and support to abate major hazardous building-related conditions, including polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in transformers radon; and leaking underground storage tanks;

(5)  Directs asbestos abatement activities for buildings abroad; and

(6)  Ensures that OBO-administered construction contracts include construction site safety and health requirements.

15 fam 927  office of acquisitions MANAGEMENT (A/OPE/aQM)

(CT:OBO-81;   04-15-2019)

The Director of the Office of Acquisitions Management (A/OPE/AQM), in coordination with the SHEM Director, must ensure that SHEM standards and policies are addressed as part of the contracting and procurement processes for operations abroad.  The SHEM office will assist in identifying procurements that require SHEM standards or requirements.  A/OPE/AQM contracting officers must:

(1)  Review project specifications to ensure that they do not conflict with SHEM standards;

(2)  Ensure that appropriate safety, health, and environmental requirements are included in the contracting documents before solicitation; and

(3)  Review the adequacy of each contractor’s written safety and occupational health plan, if a plan is required.

15 fam 928  office of inspector general (Oig)

(CT:OBO-52;   06-07-2016)

The Office of Inspector General schedules post inspections to evaluate how well posts meet Safety, Health, and Environmental Management (SHEM) Program objectives and requirements.  OIG post inspections include, but are not limited to, reviews of incident and mishap reporting, SHEM assessment reports of posts’ deficiencies and required resolution, and assistance and funding provided by the Department of State’s relevant bureaus and offices.