The Hazard Communication (HazCom) Program outlines the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign’s commitment to compliance with the OSHA Hazard Communication Standard as adopted by the Illinois Department of Labor on 9/17/2007. It provides guidance on how to implement the plan for individual campus units (department, division, school, center, institute). 


The HazCom Program applies to all non-laboratory work areas where employees are potentially exposed to hazardous chemicals. 

A HazCom Plan is required for shops where any kind of chemicals, e.g., paints, thinners, glues, sprays, wood dust, are being used or generated; maintenance personnel are using chemicals such as cleaning agents; or for any other work place where employees regularly use products that contain hazardous chemicals. Each campus unit should identify work areas where non-laboratory exposure to chemicals occurs. The unit head is responsible for ensuring that the requirements of the HazCom Standard are met. 

A HazCom Plan is NOT required for occasional use of consumer products such as glues, ink, toner, or detergents, where the exposure is not higher or different than it would be for typical household use. Typical office use of such consumer products does NOT require participation in the program.

Contact DRS if you think your unit may fall under the HazCom Program and you have not implemented a plan. We will assist you in implementing a plan for your unit. DRS will also perform a hazard assessment and provide initial training. 

Implementing the Plan

To implement the plan, be familiar with the campus HazCom Plan. The plan is composed of the following five elements: 

  1. Inventory: Maintain a master list of hazardous chemicals used or produced in the work area. 
  2. Safety Data Sheets (SDS): Obtain a Safety Data Sheet for each product, and ensure its availability to everybody using the product. Electronic access as alternative to paper copies is permitted as long as no barriers to immediate employee access are created. 
  3. Labeling: Make sure all containers are properly labeled.
  4. Chemical Hazard Assessment: Every task involving hazardous chemicals has to be assessed to select adequate personal protective equipment. DRS will work with each unit to perform the initial assessment. If new chemical hazards are introduced to the work area, or if processes are modified in such a way that the exposure changes, a new hazard assessment must be performed. In this case, DRS can be contacted to perform or assist with the Hazard Assessment.
  5. Training: Every employee handling hazardous chemicals should receive training on the HazCom Standard. The training consists of a general part and a work specific part. When a unit first enters the HazCom program, DRS will provide the general training and give guidance for the work specific training. After the initial training, units are expected to offer refresher training as necessary, to train new employees, and to train on new products. To assist units in training new employees, DRS provides an online training module that covers the general portion of the required training. A PowerPoint presentation covering the general portion is also available upon request. 

The campus HazCom Plan should be appended with unit specific information (form below), such as location of the plan, SDS, and personnel responsible for maintaining the plan. 

The plan should be evaluated annually by the unit to make sure:

  • Every product in use is listed on the inventory and an SDS is available;
  • Employees have been trained on new hazards if applicable;
  • The products and procedures evaluated in the hazard assessment have not changed, or a new hazard assessment has been performed;
  • New employees have received training.

The annual review should be documented via the Annual Evaluation Form (below), with a copy emailed to DRS. 

Campus HazCom Plan

Campus Written Hazard Communication Plan

Unit-Specific Forms


OSHA Hazard Communication Standard 1910.1200

OSHA Personal Protective Equipment Standard 1910.132

    Last Update: 3/10/2020
    Updated By: kohl3