Volunteer STAR Recognition Program

Tennessee’s Voluntary Protection Program (also known as the Volunteer STAR Award) is designed to recognize and promote effective safety and health management.

The Volunteer STAR is patterned after the OSHA Voluntary Protection Program (VPP) and recognizes the best of the best in the area of safety and health programming and performance. Qualified candidates must demonstrate that they have performed in a manner that is below the national average for injury and illness rates in their industrial classification. They must also have all of the critical safety and health management system components in place and involve their employees in a manner that ensures total involvement in safety and health issues.

On average the Tennessee Volunteer STAR sites experience three-year Total Case Incident Rates (TCIR) 69.4% below their industry average and three-year Days Away, Restricted or Transferred Case Rates (DART) 72.1% below their industry average.

A certificate of recognition is awarded to the STAR recipient, as is a flag that can be flown at the site. The company is also permitted to use the Volunteer STAR logo on their correspondence and company documents. This recognition program includes an exemption from TOSHA Compliance programmed inspections for three years. This can be extended by successful continuation of the program requirements.

Benefits of the Volunteer STAR program

The following benefits have been cited by current Volunteer STAR participants:

  • Improved employee motivation to work safely, leading to better quality and productivity
  • Reduced workers' compensation costs
  • Recognition in the community
  • Improvement of programs that are already good, through the internal and external review that's part of the Volunteer STAR application process
  • Volunteer STAR participant sites generally experience from 60 to 80 percent fewer lost workday injuries than would be expected of an "average" site of the same size in their industries

Apply for the Volunteer STAR

You must submit a written application to TOSHA. The application guideline is included in the Volunteer STAR information kit. After your written application has been reviewed by TOSHA, an Onsite Review will be scheduled.


Volunteer Protection Programs Participants:

Federal OSHA VPP Page
Voluntary Protection Program Participants Association
Region IV Voluntary Protection Program


David Blessman

STAR Program Manager
(800) 325-9901