DOE’s Differing Professional Opinion process for technical issues involving environment, safety and health

Amber Kenney

All employees should be aware that in instances where employees have technical concerns related to environment, safety or health that have not been resolved through established Fermilab channels, the Department of Energy’s Differing Professional Opinion, or DPO, process offers a supplementary approach.

Several established processes allow federal, contractor and subcontractor employees to request further assessment when there is a disagreement about appropriate actions to resolve an environment, safety or health issue or concern. These processes are designed to resolve differing professional opinions at local and internal levels. Your options for reporting ESH concerns are described in this Employee ESH Concerns flyer and include:

  • Discussing the concern with your supervisor.
  • Discussing the concern with the division safety officer or a subject matter expert.
  • Discussing the concern with the Fermilab Site Office employee concerns manager, John Scott, x2250.

If one of the above steps has not resulted in resolution of the concern, you may also use the formal DOE Employee Concerns Management System hotline at 800-676-3267; reach out to the DOE DPO contact for Fermilab, Karl Moro, at 630-252-2065; or use the DPO submittal form. Fermilab’s FESHM 1060, which is the Fermilab ES&H Concerns Program, outlines the use of the DPO process per DOE O 442.2. The DPO process is available to help resolve technical issues that have the potential for a significant impact on environment, safety or health after all other local processes for resolution have been exhausted.

Amber Kenney is the Fermilab chief safety officer.