? ? Tufts University, in concert with its partners, the Immigrant Service Providers Group (ISPG) as the community-based organization and the Cambridge Health Alliance as the health care provider, will implement a four-year, three-part program to address occupational health risks to immigrant workers in Somerville, MA. Somerville, known as a """"""""gateway"""""""" community due to the diverse variety of immigrant populations and community organizations, as well as remarkable temporal shifts in its immigrant population, represents a unique laboratory for this activity. For example, this project leverages existing peer youth and adult educational training and advocacy programs for immigrants. These programs have been successfully implemented by members of the ISPG (Haitian Coalition, Latino Coalition, and the Community Action Agency of Somerville) on issues ranging from tobacco use to ambient environmental hazards. The proposal is to extend the impact of these successes in designing a sustainable, community-based capability to assess, characterize, and reduce occupational health risks in immigrant populations. Further, it is believed that the very structure and organization of work influences such key issues such as immigrant empowerment and the sustainability of interventions aimed at lessening the impact of occupational injury, illness and mortality. As a result, a pilot Green Cleaning Cooperative, to address occupational risks encountered by female immigrant workers engaged in domestic services, will be launched. This aspect of the project will leverage work of the Collaboration for Better Work Environment for Brazilians (COBWEB) project based at the University of Massachusetts Lowell and at the Brazilian Immigrant Center in Boston. Also, the Massachusetts Coalition for Occupational Safety and Health (MassCOSH) will be a key partner by contributing occupational content, materials and training to this grant. The MassCOSH partnership establishes a link to another work and environment project based in Dorchester, MA. This proposed project builds upon past successes of the partners (peer leadership) and leverages investments made in nearby projects. An annual immigrant occupational assessment will be employed to identify needs and best practices in Somerville and actively pursued to disseminate this information to other cities and towns with substantial immigrant populations in concert with the Massachusetts Executive Office of Environmental Affairs and the Boston Public Health Commission. ? ? ?

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH)
Education Projects (R25)
Project #
Application #
Study Section
Special Emphasis Panel (ZES1-LWJ-B (EJ))
Program Officer
Newhall, Jim
Project Start
Project End
Budget Start
Budget End
Support Year
Fiscal Year
Total Cost
Indirect Cost
Tufts University
Engineering (All Types)
Schools of Engineering
United States
Zip Code
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Panikkar, Bindu; Woodin, Mark A; Brugge, Doug et al. (2014) Characterizing the low wage immigrant workforce: a comparative analysis of the health disparities among selected occupations in Somerville, Massachusetts. Am J Ind Med 57:516-26
Panikkar, Bindu; Woodin, Mark A; Brugge, Doug et al. (2013) Occupational health outcomes among self-identified immigrant workers living and working in Somerville, Massachusetts 2006-2009. J Immigr Minor Health 15:882-9
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