The Weed Science Society of America Tuesday called for improved education for pesticide applicators, announcing a three-year initiative that will strengthen applicators' curriculum.
The initiative was spurred by the National Stakeholder Team for Pesticide Safety Education Funding, which includes representatives from government, extension, industry, professional societies and universities.
Goals of the new training initiative include establishing a national website for training materials; creating more online classes; updating materials for national website; allotting appropriate time pesticides in recertification and certification classes; increasing collaboration in filling training material gaps; and pursuing additional support statewide.
"The team continues to evaluate a broad range of options for strengthening PSEPs throughout the United States," notes Charles Moses, Co-Lead of the National Stakeholder Team, representing the Association of American Pesticide Control Officials. "This initiative is one important product of the Team's work and is now being implemented by a separate board."
The board includes representatives from the American Association of Pesticide Safety Educators, the Association of American Pesticide Control Officials, the Association of Structural Pest Control Regulatory Officials, the Cooperative Extension Service, CropLife America, Dow AgroSciences, DuPont Crop Protection, Syngenta, the U.S. Department of Agriculture Office of Pest Management Policy and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
"Strong pesticide safety education programs throughout the U.S. benefit us all," noted Robert Magee, board co-chair.