The Secretary of Labor's vision for the U. S. workforce is Promoting and Protecting Opportunity for All.
One of the Secretary's goals is to secure a safe and healthy workplace, especially at mines.
Under Section 503 of the Federal Mine Safety and Health Act of 1977 (Mine Act),
Public Law 95-164, as amended, the Secretary of Labor through the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) may award grants to States to assist them in developing and enforcing State mining laws and regulations, to improve State workers compensation and mining occupational disease laws and programs, and to improve safety and health conditions in the Nations mines through Federal-State coordination and cooperation.
MSHA recognizes that State training programs are a key source of mine safety and health training and education of individuals who work or will work at mines.
MSHA encourages State training programs, as a priority, to focus their efforts on small mining operations.
MSHA is also interested in 2 supporting programs that include training on miners' statutory rights, including the right to be provided a safe working environment and the right to refuse to perform an unsafe task.
The Agency encourages recipients to focus on programs which include education and training related to occupational health hazards and diseases (such as black lung and silicosis), mine emergency evacuation training and drills (including donning and transferring self-contained self-rescuers (SCSRs)), and mine rescue team training.