DOE VPP logo

The Department of Energy Voluntary Protection Program (DOE-VPP) recognizes DOE contractor participants for going above and beyond the basic requirements of DOE safety and health regulations, orders, and standards. The DOE-VPP promotes excellence in contractor safety and health programs and encourages DOE contractor participants to seek continuous improvement in safety and health through cooperative efforts by managers, employees, bargaining units (where applicable), and DOE. The program origin was based on close parallels with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) VPP and continues to share similarities, including the philosophy of strictly voluntary participation by member organizations. The DOE-VPP community includes a collaborative network of DOE staff and site contractors working to share safety and health best practices through VPP Assessments and conference knowledge-sharing.



The Department of Energy Voluntary Protection Program (DOE-VPP) promotes safety and health excellence through cooperative efforts among labor, management, and government at the Department of Energy (DOE) contractor sites. DOE has also formed partnerships with other Federal agencies and the private sector for both advancing and sharing its Voluntary Protection Program (VPP) experiences and preparing for program challenges in the next century. The safety and health of contractor and federal employees are a high priority for the Department.

The Department initiated its VPP in January 1994 to promote improved safety and health performance through public recognition of outstanding programs. DOE-VPP also includes coverage of radiation protection/nuclear safety and emergency management because of the type and complexity of DOE facilities. Similar to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration's (OSHA's) VPP program, DOE-VPP provides several proven benefits to participating sites, including improved labor/management relations, reduced workplace injuries and illnesses, increased employee involvement, improved morale, reduced absenteeism, and public recognition.

Categories of Achievement

The DOE-VPP has three (3) levels of recognition; STAR, MERIT, and DEMONSTRATION. Contractors whose programs meet the requirements for outstanding safety and health programs receive STAR recognition, the highest achievement level. Contractors with highly effective programs, who commit themselves to attain STAR status within a five-year period, receive MERIT recognition. A site can retain MERIT recognition for a maximum of five years. The DEMONSTRATION program is expected to be used rarely. This program allows DOE to recognize existing achievements in unusual situations about which more information is needed before approval requirements for the STAR program can be determined. Once approved, STAR sites are reevaluated every three years, while MERIT and DEMONSTRATION sites are evaluated annually.

Partnering with the Private Sector

The VPP Outreach Program partners DOE contractors working toward DOE-VPP recognition with private-sector firms that have achieved OSHA STAR status, so that they may learn firsthand what it takes to become a STAR site. This program is operated jointly by the Department and the Voluntary Protection Program Participants' Association (VPPPA).


The VPPPA, a nonprofit organization, is a leader in safety, health, and environmental excellence through cooperative efforts among labor, management, and government. As part of its efforts to share the benefits of cooperative programs, the VPPPA works closely with the OSHA, OSHA state plan states, DOE, and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in the development and implementation of cooperative programs within the agencies. VPPPA also provides expertise to these groups in the form of comments and stakeholder feedback on agency rulemakings and policies. The Association also provides comments and testimony to members of Congress regarding legislative bills on health and safety issues. The VPPPA, a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) charitable organization, is a leader in safety, health, and environmental excellence through cooperative efforts among employees, management, and government. VPPPA members include more than 450 companies and work sites that are involved in OSHA's VPP or the DOE's VPP, and government agencies that are developing or implementing cooperative recognition programs.

March 19, 2024

The VPP Points of Contact document provides a current listing of all current DOE VPP participants Points of Contact for both Federal and Contractor positions.

VPP Points of Contact - March 2024

April 13, 1994

The Office of Safety and Quality Assurance (EH-30) is requesting approval for DOE membership in the VPPPA. Attached is the Secretary's authorization of the DOE Voluntary Protection Program (DOE-VPP).

Approval memorandum for DOE participation in VPPPA

March 19, 2024

The VPP participant status report represents the current status of the DOE contractors with the DOE Voluntary Protection Program.  The table describes the level of accomplishment of each participant within DOE-VPP, most recent review date, and upcoming program action schedule.

VPP Site Status Report - March 2024

State VPP Programs

* Puerto Rico is a self-governing commonwealth or territory in association with the United States.

The head of government is an elected Governor, they have two legislative chambers; a House of Representatives and a Senate; and authority over all internal affairs.