2013-01-01 12:00 - Messages

Migrant and seasonal crop worker injury and illness across the Northeast

Background: Northeast farmworkers are a small, widely dispersed, and isolated population. Little is known about their occupational injury and illness risk. Methods: Researchers conducted chart reviews in migrant health centers across the Northeast, and calculated incidence-density for agricultural morbidity based on a new method for estimating total worker hours at risk, and adjusting for cases seen at other sources of care. Results: An estimated annual average of 1,260 cases translated to an incidence of 30.27 per 10,000 worker weeks, (12.7 per 100 FTEs). Straining/spraining events (56% cases) was the most common occurrence (16.8 per 10,000 worker weeks), and lifting (21.5% cases) was the leading contributing factor. Incidence by crop category ranged from 12.95 (ground crop) to 29.69 (bush crop) per 10,000 weeks. Only 2.8% filed for Workers' Compensation. Conclusion: The predominance of straining/spraining events affecting the back, and their association with lifting suggests that Northeastern farmworker occupational health programs should focus on ergonomics, and specifically on safe lifting.

Source : Scribani M, Wyckoff S, Jenkins P, Bauer H, Earle-Richardson G. Migrant and seasonal crop worker injury and illness across the Northeast .Am. J. Ind. Med. 2012; ePub http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ajim.22150

Enquête : Maçons, vendeurs, aides à domicile, nous ne sommes pas tous égaux face au vieillissement au travail

A partir des données de la 5ème enquête européenne sur les conditions de travail, l’Institut syndical européen a examiné les changements des conditions de travail en fonction des différentes catégories d'âge et de profession. De quoi nourrir les réflexions sur la soutenabilité du travail. Dans l'étude "Métiers et vieillissement  au travail. Une analyse des résultats de la cinquième enquête européenne sur les conditions de travail", publiée en septembre 2012 par l’Institut syndical européen (European Trade Union Institute, ETUI), P. Vendramin et G. Valenduc mettent en évidence que les travailleurs manuels moyennement ou peu qualifiés, ainsi que les travailleurs des services sont des groupes professionnels à risque au regard de leurs conditions de travail. Ils soulignent l’importance des problèmes de santé dans la perception des impacts des situations de travail selon les métiers et les tranches d’âge et constatent encore que la proportion de salariés qui pensent que leur travail affecte leur santé de manière négative varie en fonction du métier exercé. 

Source : http://www.anact.fr/web/actualite/essentiel?p_thingIdToShow=30927603

Presenteeism and absenteeism: Differentiated understanding of related phenomena

In the past it was assumed that work attendance equated to performance. It now appears that health-related loss of productivity can be traced equally to workers showing up at work as well as to workers choosing not to. Presenteeism in the workplace, showing up for work while sick, seems now more prevalent than absenteeism. These findings are forcing organizations to reconsider their approaches regarding regular work attendance. Given this, and echoing recommendations in the literature, this study seeks to identify the main behavioral correlates of presenteeism and absenteeism in the workplace. Comparative analysis of the data from a representative sample of executives from the Public Service of Canada enables us to draw a unique picture of presenteeism and absenteeism with regards not only to the impacts of health disorders but also to the demographic, organizational, and individual factors involved. Results provide a better understanding of the similarities and differences between these phenomena, and more specifically, of the differentiated influence of certain variables. These findings provide food for thought and may pave the way to the development of new organizational measures designed to manage absenteeism without creating presenteeism.

Source : Gosselin, Eric; Lemyre, Louise; Corneil, Wayne Presenteeism and absenteeism: Differentiated understanding of related phenomena.  Journal of Occupational Health Psychology, Vol 18(1), Jan 2013, 75-86. http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/a0030932

The Australian Workplace Barometer: report on psychosocial safety climate and worker health in Australia

The Australian Workplace Barometer project aims to provide science driven evidence of Australian work conditions and their relationships to workplace health and productivity, through a national monitoring and surveillance system.
This report was commissioned by Safe Work Australia to provide a summary of the results from data obtained from six Australian states and territories. The data provides evidence relating to psychosocial risk factors in the working Australian population as well as an analysis of relationships between risk factors and employee health and motivational outcomes.

Source : http://www.safeworkaustralia.gov.au/sites/swa/about/publications/pages/the-australian-workplace-barometer-report

A review of the literature on effective leadership behaviours for safety

There is widespread agreement between industry, regulators, academics and the press that leadership is a key component of a safe organisation. While there is considerable literature on leadership, very little of this addresses the issue of safety, particularly in the major hazard sector.
This research aims to identify specific leadership styles, attitudes, behaviours and practices.

Source . http://www.hse.gov.uk/research/rrpdf/rr952.pdf

The missing link: using emotional intelligence to reduce workplace stress and workplace violence in our nursing and other health care professions

Because of our poor emotionally intelligent responses and interactions, many nurses and other health care staff have become scarred emotionally from abusive, demoralizing, or hostile acts inflicted on one another. Rude, disruptive behavior among health care professionals can pose a serious threat to patient safety and the overall quality of care. The expectation of regulating bodies is that health care professionals focus on effects disruptive behavior has on a culture of safety for both patients and staff. Relatively recent research in training and development, and behavior change, specifically on emotional intelligence, suggests that it is possible to improve the emotional competence of adults. I posit it is possible to increase emotional competence to reduce health workplace stress and workplace violence.
Index words

Emotional intelligence; Nursing; Stress; Workplace violence; Workplace environment
Source : Littlejohn P. The Missing Link: Using Emotional Intelligence to Reduce Workplace Stress and Workplace Violence in Our Nursing and Other Health Care Professions, J. Prof. Nurs., 2012, 28(6), p. 360-368. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.profnurs.2012.04.006

Télétravail à domicile : risques psychosociaux

La CARSAT Nord-Picardie publie un guide pratique sur les risques professionnels spécifiquement rencontrés par les télétravailleurs à domicile et les solutions à apporter. Dans une première partie, les obligations réglementaires liées au télétravail à domicile sont rappelées : le volontariat, l’obligation pour l’employeur de prendre en charge tous les coûts découlant de l’exercice du télétravail, la nécessité de définir des plages horaires. Le guide propose également une synthèse complète des avantages et inconvénients du télétravail à domicile, tant du point de vue de l’employeur que du salarié. Les risques professionnels auxquels est exposé le télétravailleur ne sont pas différents de ceux des autres salariés de l’entreprise mais son éloignement peut en amplifier les effets. Le fait d’être seul pour y faire face est d’autant plus important pour la mise en œuvre d’une politique de prévention adaptée.

Source : http://www.preventica.com/actu-enbref-teletravail-domicile-risque-psychosociaux-1121212.php

Occupational safety in multicultural teams and organizations: A research agenda

Safety is an important issue in the workplace, in particular at the lower end of the labor market where the workforce often consists of people with different cultural backgrounds. Studies have underlined the potential threats to occupational safety of this workforce. Surprisingly, however, very little research has been conducted on national culture and occupational safety. In this paper, we examine how national culture may play a role in important antecedents of safety behavior that have identified in the meta-analysis of Christian et al. (2009). We discuss safety knowledge, safety motivation, and safety climate. Based on this analysis, we make a number of suggestions for future research.

Source : Starren A, Hornikx J, Luijters K. Occupational safety in multicultural teams and organizations: A research agenda, Safety Sci. 2013, 52(1), 43-49.

Leading indicators of construction safety performance

The concept of using leading indicators of safety performance is introduced with a clear contrast given with lagging indicators. Leading indicators of safety performance are measures of the safety process as it applies to construction work, while lagging indicators pertain to the safety results, namely the extent of the occurrence of worker injuries. Leading indicators consist of both passive as well as active measures. Passive measures are those which can be predictive over an extended period of time while active measures are those which can initiate corrective steps in a short period of time. Suggestions are offered on the selection and use of effective leading indicators. The results of a simple research study demonstrate the extent to which leading indicators can be utilized to distinguish the differences in project safety performances.
Construction safety; Injuries; Leading indicators; Safety measures

Source : http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ssci.2012.05.016

The main benefits associated with health and safety management systems certification in Portuguese small and medium enterprises post quality management system certification

The purpose of this study is to characterize how Portuguese Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) view the Occupational Health and Safety Management Systems (OHSMSs) certification process, after receiving the Quality Management System (QMS) certification. References were based on the ISO 9001 standard for a QMS and OHSAS 18001 for OHSMS. The method used to evaluate the implemented systems, was by form of questionnaire. Those questioned had to have a certified quality management system, an implemented OHSMS and be a SME. The questionnaire was sent to 300 SMEs; 46 responses were received and validated. Of them, only 12 SMEs had the OHSMS certificate according to OHSAS 18001. Within those 12 companies that participated: 7 SMEs are from the industrial sector; 3 belong to the electricity/telecommunications sector and 2 SMEs are from the trade/services activity sector. The size of the sample was small, but corresponds to Portuguese reality. Moreover, 34 SMEs did not have the OHSMS certificate. The questionnaire requested the main reasons for SMEs to opt for non-certification and it was related with high costs, while the main reasons to certificate were, among others, needed to eliminate or minimize risks to workers. The main benefits that Portuguese SMEs have gained from the referred certifications have been, improved working conditions, ensuring compliance with legislation and better internal communication about risks and hazards. Also presented are the main difficulties in achieving an OHSMS certification including high certification costs, difficulties motivating personnel, difficulties in changing the company's culture and increased bureaucracy.

Source : Santos G, Barros S, Mendes F, Lopes N. Safety Sci. 2013; 51(1): 29-36. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ssci.2012.06.014

Evaluation of the effectiveness of occupational injury prevention programs at the company level

The objective was to evaluate the effectiveness of an occupational injury prevention program, known as the Preferential Action Plan (PAP), focused on companies with high incidence rates of occupational injuries. We studied 1189 companies in the industrial, construction and services sectors between 1999 and 2007 in the Valencia region (Spain). Our sample included 507,262 workers, among whom 44,250 non-fatal occupational injuries with at least a workday lost were registered. Companies included in a PAP program were divided into three intervention groups, according to the year that each company entered into a PAP (2000, 2001, and 2002). We calculated annual percentage change in incidence rates of occupational injuries for companies with a PAP and for those without a PAP (comparison group), and trends in the incidence rates of occupational injuries were compared between each intervention group and the comparison group. The results showed that the trend in the occupational injury rate declined 12%, 14% and 11% annually for the 2000, 2001, and 2002 intervention groups respectively, and around 5% for the comparison group. The differences in intervention and comparison group trends were found to be statistically significant. This pattern is observed by company size and activity sector, length of sick leave, and type of injury. According to these results, the use of PAPs in companies with high incidence rates of occupational injuries seems to be effective in the prevention of occupational injuries.

Source : López-Ruiz M, Martínez JM, Gil JM, Boix P, García AM, Rodrigo F, Moreno A, Benavides FG. Evaluation of the effectiveness of occupational injury prevention programs at the company level, Safety Sci. 2013; 51(1), p. 250-256. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ssci.2012.06.026

Working and ageing : the benefits of investing in an ageing workforce

Slowly but steadily, the attitude towards population ageing is changing in Europe. Early reports had described it as a demographic time bomb with negative consequences for economies and societies. But these changes are increasingly seen as harbingers of opportunity and the emerging ‘silver economy’ as a driver of future growth. This publication, which marks the European Year 2012 for active ageing and solidarity between generations, contributes to the debate by providing new insights that are based on the latest research and best practices in Europe and the Member States. The evidence points towards the importance of demonstrating the benefits of learning to all stakeholders and developing the capacity of organisations to make the best of their employees’ abilities at any age

Source : http://www.cedefop.europa.eu/EN/Files/3064_en.pdf

Worker participation practices: a review of EU-OSHA case studies : literature review

U-OSHA publishes case studies of good practices to prevent workplace risks. The cases are analysed and effective worker participation consistently appears as a basic requirement for the successful identification of problems and implementation of practical solutions, regardless of the size or type of workplace or type of problem. Many of the cases describe how worker participation took place in practice and its role in introducing successful prevention measures. This report compiles these worker participation components to provide an overview of how worker participation featured in the various cases and show the approaches and methods that were used.

Source : https://osha.europa.eu/en/publications/literature_reviews/worker-participation-practices-a-review-of-eu-osha-case-studies?sourceid=rss&utm_source=home&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=rssfeeds

Review of workplace innovation and its relation with occupational safety and health

This report provides evidence that high levels of occupational safety and health (OSH) performance (low accident rates and absenteeism, OSH culture) correlate with workplace innovation and human performance. Workplace innovations are strategy induced and participatory adopted changes in an organisation’s practice of managing, organising and deploying human and non-human resources that lead to simultaneously improved organisational performance and improved quality of working life.

Source : https://osha.europa.eu/en/publications/literature_reviews/workplace-innovation-review?sourceid=rss&utm_source=home&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=rssfeeds

Motivation for employees to participate in workplace health promotion : literature review

This report presents the findings of a literature review that identifies the motivating factors for employees to participate in workplace health promotion (WHP). This knowledge can be used to improve WHP programmes and, consequently, participation rates. The findings section of the report is divided into two key areas. The first outlines and describes some of the key findings from the literature concerning workers’ motivation to participate in WHP, and the second examines the role that diversity may play in workers’ participation and recruitment. WHP is the combined efforts of employers, workers and society to improve the health and wellbeing of people at work. Developing and sustaining a healthy work environment and workforce has clear benefits for companies and employees, but can also lead to an improvement in social and economic development at local, regional, national and European level.

Source : https://osha.europa.eu/en/publications/literature_reviews/motivation-employees-whp?sourceid=rss&utm_source=home&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=rssfeeds


Pratiques addictives et travail. Un cocktail particulièrement dangereux : Dossier TS

Les pratiques addictives, un sujet complexe et tabou que nombre d'entreprises éprouvent des difficultés à aborder de front. Pourtant, les conditions de travail sont un facteur influençant les comportements. Mettre en place un plan de prévention collective, impliquer les différents acteurs de l'entreprise, briser les tabous... certaines actions sont indispensables pour mener à bien une telle démarche en entreprise.

Source : http://www.inrs.fr/accueil/produits/mediatheque/doc/publications.html?refINRS=TS733page16

Eurofound publishes a study on sustainable work and the ageing workforce

A new study of Eurofound, based on the fifth European Working Conditions Survey, examines the ways older workers perceive the sustainability of their work, taking account of differences between workers in terms of age, occupation and gender. In addition, the working conditions of the ageing workforce across Member States of the European Union are compared.

Source : https://osha.europa.eu/en/news/eurofound-publishes-a-study-on-sustainable-work-and-the-ageing-workforce?sourceid=rss&utm_source=home&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=rssfeeds


Determining safety inspection thresholds for employee incentives programs on construction sites

The goal of this project was to evaluate approaches of determining the numerical value of a safety inspection score that would activate a reward in an employee safety incentive program. Safety inspections are a reflection of the physical working conditions at a construction site and provide a safety score that can be used in incentive programs to reward workers. Yet it is unclear what level of safety should be used when implementing this kind of program. This study explored five ways of grouping safety inspection data collected during 19 months at Harvard University-owned construction projects. Each approach grouped the data by one of the following: owner, general contractor, project, trade, or subcontractor. The median value for each grouping provided the threshold score. These five approaches were then applied to data from a completed project in order to calculate the frequency and distribution of rewards in a monthly safety incentive program. The application of each approach was evaluated qualitatively for consistency, competitiveness, attainability, and fairness. The owner-specific approach resulted in a threshold score of 96.3% and met all of the qualitative evaluation goals. It had the most competitive reward distribution (only 1/3 of the project duration) yet it was also attainable. By treating all workers equally and maintaining the same value throughout the project duration, this approach was fair and consistent. The owner-based approach for threshold determination can be used by owners or general contractors when creating leading indicator incentives programs and by researchers in future studies on incentive program effectiveness.

Source : Sparer EH, Dennerlein JT. Determining safety inspection thresholds for employee incentives programs on construction sites, Safety Sci. 2013; 51(1): 77-84. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ssci.2012.06.009


Situation personnelle et professionnelle des travailleurs québécois âgés de 50 ans et plus et intentions à l’égard de la retraite

Cette étude a pour objectif de tracer un portrait de la situation personnelle et professionnelle des travailleurs québécois âgés de 50 ans et plus. Plus particulièrement, elle analyse trois grandes dimensions, à savoir l’état de santé de ces travailleurs, le stress au travail de ce groupe de même que leur satisfaction à l’égard de l’emploi occupé en 2008. Ces éléments sont fort pertinents dans tout le débat entourant le prolongement de la vie active. Ce rapport comprend aussi une section traitant des intentions à l’égard de la retraite qui peuvent prendre deux formes : rester sur le marché du travail ou encore prendre une retraite de façon définitive.

L’étude comprend cinq sections. Dans un premier temps, on aborde l’ampleur du vieillissement de la main-d’œuvre au Québec et des grandes transformations s’étant produites sur le marché du travail. Dans un deuxième temps, l’étude s’intéresse à l’état de santé des travailleurs plus âgés selon leur évaluation. Ensuite, la question du stress vécu au travail est étudiée dans cette population. La quatrième section de l’étude porte sur la satisfaction au travail telle que perçue par les travailleurs plus âgés. Enfin, dans la dernière section, une analyse multivariée portant spécifiquement sur les intentions des travailleurs plus âgés à l’égard de la retraite est produite.

Source : http://www.stat.gouv.qc.ca/publications/remuneration/situation_prof.htm


"Y'en a marre !" Le coup de gueule de Corinne, assistante dans un organisme de formation professionnelle

L'Anact a réalisé un film pédagogique qui présente la démarche d'identification des facteurs de risques psychosociaux à partir d'une situation de travail.
Au travers de l'histoire de Corinne, assistante dans un organisme de formation professionnelle, le film pédagogique "Y'en a marre" présente la démarche Anact d'identification des facteurs de risques psychosociaux à partir d'une situation de travail. Cette démarche permet à toute entreprise de caractériser ces facteurs de risques, puis de les inscrire dans le document unique avec des actions de prévention adaptées. "Y'en a marre" permet de comprendre comment l'analyse d'une situation-problème (en partant par exemple d'un "coup de gueule") permet de révéler l’organisation de l’entreprise et ses possibles conséquences sur le résultat du travail, le fonctionnement des collectifs et ses effets sur la santé des individus. Ce film peut être librement utilisé dans tout collectif d'entreprise pour introduire un dialogue sur les difficultés du travail.

Source : http://www.anact.fr/web/actualite/essentiel?p_thingIdToShow=30065609

The influence of indirect collective trauma on first responders' alcohol use

Previous research has suggested increased risk for negative outcomes such as increased alcohol use among first responders who are involved with the response to a community disaster; however it is not clear how indirect exposure to a critical incident impacts first responders. This work examined the impact of secondary or indirect trauma on changes in alcohol use among urban firefighters who were not directly involved in the response to a large scale community-level disaster. Firefighters enrolled in larger trial of health outcomes whose interview period coincided with the crash of a commercial airplane were the basis for the current report. Aggregate level data on changes in alcohol consumption for these firefighters were examined pre- and post-incident. There was a significant increase in alcohol use following the critical incident. This increase did not occur immediately; it was observed within several days and peaked about 8 days post-incident. Post-hoc analyses revealed that the increased alcohol consumption persisted for several months, finally returning to pre-incident levels by 8 months post-incident. Indirect trauma effects, likely operationalized in part through the "brotherhood" of the firefighters, clearly placed firefighters at risk for negative outcomes following a disaster. Intervention/prevention efforts aimed at distress reduction among first responders should not solely focus on responders with direct involvement in a disaster.

Source : Homish GG, Frazer BS, Carey MG. The influence of indirect collective trauma on first responders' alcohol use, Int. J. Emerg. Ment. Health, 2012, 14(1), p. 21-28.


Rethinking workplace bullying as an employment relations problem

Over the past three decades, a growing body of international literature points to a relationship between workplace bullying and certain changes to organizational and employment policies. Some of these changes include an increase in precarious employment, greater workloads, restructuring and downsizing, and the reduction in third-party intervention in workplace relations. However, while governments and many organizations have introduced policies in response to workplace bullying, there is little evidence that they have been successful in either the prevention or resolution of the problem. This article explores reasons for this apparent policy failure by reviewing workplace bullying literature and using data collected from interviews with policy actors in Australian public sector organizations. What emerges from these analyses is that prevailing theorizations and policy definitions emphasize the individual aspects of bullying and overlook the significance of organizational, employment and cultural factors. The article argues that narrow explanations of workplace bullying limit the capacity of policies to prevent or resolve the problem. Finally, the article concludes by suggesting that a multidisciplinary approach to understanding workplace bullying as a work and employment relations issue is a fundamental step in its prevention.

Source : Hutchinson J. J. Ind. Relat. 2012; 54(5): 637-652. http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0022185612454955

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