The Star to get defibs

Dateline: Mon 06 Nov 2006

Gannett has finally done the right thing: purchased 17 defibs or AEDs (automatic external defibrillators). They'll be installed at Gannett's 5 Indiana papers and the printing press, starting with the Star first.

CPR training is also being offered.

The impetus of this Human Resources-driven strategy is obviously the death July 3 of Mpozi Tolbert in the newsroom. He suffered cardiac arrest as a result of a heart condition. All my research shows that having a defib on hand may have corrected the electrical imbalance in his heart -- the devices have saved thousands of lives in corporations, industries, gyms, government offices, etc.

Both Barbara Henry and Dennis Ryerson told me after Mpozi died that HR was in the process of initiating CPR training. I am very happy that this has come to pass. It's a victory for workers everywhere, and God bless the working man and woman.

Since I've been out of country, I have no idea if the Indiana Dept of Labor's OSHA folks have issued their report on Mpozi's death. I requested a copy of the report and it may well be in the mail held by the postal service. Perhaps the department recommended the purchase? I don't know. The main thing is: this was the right thing to do, and Mpozi Tolbert cared deeply about doing the right thing. Rest in peace, Mpozi.



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