Safety Committee

final safety committee logo

The AAZK Safety Committee serves the membership by coordinating continuing education related to keeper safety and preparedness.  The Committee creates workshops and certificate courses for presentation at the AAZK National Conference.  Articles, documents, and concepts are created and shared via Animal Keepers’ Forum, AAZK social media accounts, and the AAZK website.  The Committee will also act as a liaison between AZA and AAZK on topics related to safety.


The AAZK Safety Committee strives to develop and exchange resources for AAZK members in promotion of safety and health in the zoo and aquarium profession.


The AAZK Safety Committee will provide members with a comprehensive preparedness in public and animal safety.

Crisis Management and Pre-planning

One of the most critical components of a facility Safety Plan is a pre-planned response to an emergency event coupled with frequent staff training to ensure that every employee understands their roles in the response and can act professionally.  The AAZK Safety Committee has created and presented Workshops on Crisis Management and Response. Those workshops may be viewed in the Conference Proceedings (2015, 2016 and 2017).

Job Hazard Assessment 

The foundation of any Safety Program is establishing Hazard Assessments for all staff. By defining a potential hazard, the facility can then create and execute staff training on a specific hazard or job task and be in compliance with Occupational Safety and Health (OSHA) standards. The AAZK Safety Committee has created generic or boilerplate Job Hazard Assessments for a number of animal keeper positions:

Animal Keeper

Elephant Keeper

Great Ape Keeper

Macaque Keeper

The Job Hazard Assessments published by the American Association of Zoo Keepers as suggested baseline safety and training guidelines and are not intended to be a regulatory or all-encompassing document. This document is published with the intention that it be (amended) customized by the Zoo or Aquarium facility and included with a documented facility safety program as required by the Department of Occupational Health and Safety (OSHA).

Board Oversight – Regulation Team




Sara Morris


Katy Juliano