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Health, Safety Summit targets rural concerns
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- A Health and Safety Summit on March 23 and 24 in Jackson will address rural and occupational health concerns for much of Mississippi.
Summit organizers want to create awareness, identify issues and develop a plan to improve the safety and health environment of rural Mississippians, especially in the Delta region. The meeting will begin at 10 a.m. on the first day with remarks from Gov. Haley Barbour.
While Mississippians may work in "city jobs," including manufacturing and processing industries, they also may go home to rural homesteads or farms as a part-time occupation or hobby.
Herb Willcutt, safety specialist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said stress, fatigue and accidents from rural responsibilities can affect job performance.
"The result can be increased absences, low productivity and high rates of injury and death while on the job," Willcutt said. "While these conditions exist across the state of Mississippi, they are most prevalent in the Delta region."
Participants will include people from all aspects of medical services, agricultural groups, community leaders and individuals with an interest in youth and family issues. A fee of $75 for those registering by March 10 will cover handout materials, two lunches, break refreshments, one dinner and one continental breakfast. After that date, the registration fee is $100.
The summit is sponsored by the MSU Extension Service in partnership with the Delta Health Alliance, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the University of Mississippi Medical Center.
"There is a great need in Mississippi to address agromedicine needs and concerns. This summit will bring us one step closer to improving the health and safety of rural residents," said Vance Watson, vice president for MSU's Division of Agriculture, Forestry and Veterinary Medicine.
For online registration and more information, go to http://www.ce.msstate.edu/ healthandsafetysummit/. Additional questions can be addressed to Jane Clary, event coordinator, at (662) 325-5014 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.