To the GM Global Team:
Tragically, earlier this year, we lost two GM team members to work site fatalities. Since January 2014, we have had seven fatalities at GM sites. Each of these people had families, friends and colleagues who counted on them. Fatalities are unacceptable, and it is all of our responsibility to prevent them.
To assess our current status, to determine the path to an improved Health & Safety practice and to prevent future fatalities, we hired an external Safety Review Team (SRT) to take a hard look at GM’s workplace safety program and our safety culture. The SRT members are experts who routinely advise a wide range of companies in multiple industries on workplace safety oversight and performance.
The SRT recently completed its work and reported its findings and recommendations. The proposed actions include steps to improve:
* GM’s workplace safety leadership and culture
* The implementation of our Global Safety Management System (SMS)
* The measurement of our safety performance
In the coming weeks and months, a cross-functional team will implement the SRT’s recommendations. I’ve asked Mike Trevorrow, our newly appointed vice president of Global Workplace Safety, to lead this effort and report on the progress to me and to the GM Board of Directors. This is very important work, so I have asked Mike to report directly to me. He will also report indirectly to Alicia Boler-Davis, and remain a member of her Manufacturing leadership team.
While most of the findings focused on manufacturing operations, we intend to apply the learnings across GM at every facility and office. Every one of us — in every GM business unit and function around the globe — has a role in achieving workplace safety excellence. It’s vitally important to our teams…and our families.
Many of you work in our manufacturing locations, and you can expect these changes to become a part of the Global SMS. Also, you may notice GM Global Safety professionals and site safety representatives will be spending more time on the shop floor (at all our sites, both manufacturing and non-manufacturing) to help identify potential hazards and encourage good safety practices.
We all need to be more aware of workplace safety performance and our role in creating the right safety culture. We should speak up when we observe a hazard or something that is not right. Please continue to report injuries and share ideas for improvement, through your local safety procedures, Speak Up For Safety, or through other channels. We must have the courage to coach our co-workers when we see them doing something that may not be safe. Finally, we should praise people when they demonstrate safety excellence.
I ask all of you to live and demonstrate the values and behaviors that return our team members home safely every day. I also am asking that every GM employee and contractor commit to being a leader in workplace safety. Safety is personal and we must own it.