No worker is immune to the risk of suffering an injury while on the job. However, the potential sources for a workplace injury are not always readily apparent. In an effort to combat a common but seldom considered hazard, the government of British Columbia has changed the rules covering restaurant servers' uniforms.
British Columbia is a province in which natural resources abound, and as a result, there are many people employed in the resource sectors, including mining, fishing and forestry. These fields are considered high-risk areas for a workplace injury. A fatal injury to a forestry worker in 2016 has prompted one employer to reassess their safety training.
All areas of employment carry an element of risk to workers' health. Those risks vary by profession, and some types of workplace injury may be specific to a particular job. Firefighters are exposed to numerous hazards while on the job, although some are less obvious than others. A recent decision by the government of British Columbia has expanded the list of ailments eligible for compensation.
First responders, emergency workers, and law enforcement officers put their lives on the line and their bodies in harm's way on an almost daily basis. As a result, people in these lines of work are frequently subject to injuries on the job. Although most injuries are easy to identify, such as trauma to the body or illnesses acquired on the job, a different type of workplace injury is beginning to gain recognition in British Columbia.
When a person gets hurt on the job, the injury becomes apparent immediately. This is typical of a laceration or impact injury. However, sometimes a workplace injury does not become evident at the moment it occurs, or the severity of the injury may not be obvious. Injury to a worker's hearing, in particular, often falls into this category.
On average, people in British Columbia are living longer than they ever have before. One of the offshoots of this trend is an aging workforce. One expert suggests that a corresponding increase in workplace injury frequency and recovery time is already evident.
A recent report by the Toronto-based Institute for Work and Health reveals that those who make return-to-work decisions about injured employees may be more interested in containing their costs than protecting the well-being of workers. Some doctors believe their recommendations following a workplace injury are frequently ignored, particularly when it comes to workers suffering from mental illness, chronic pain or multiple injuries. Physicians in Vancouver may concur with the report's findings.
The potential hazards of a workplace are highly varied, and may even be unique to a particular profession or location. As such, what defines a workplace injury can be equally varied. In fact, some conditions that result from work hazards are not visible to the naked eye. In a recent case before the Supreme Court of Canada, a group of British Columbia workers fought for the right to claim compensation for a serious illness they believed developed as a direct result of where they work.
There are many common causes of injury at work. These include slips and falls, hazardous equipment, and dangerous work sites. However, some workplace injury sources may not be immediately obvious to an outsider. Several Vancouver-area nurses are entirely too aware of what those sources may be.
When heavy equipment and heavy products are present at a work site, safety should be on every worker's mind. ALthough laws are in place to protect the rights of workers in Canada, they need to be observed in order to be effective. A serious workplace injury was the consequence when safety laws were ignored at a factory in Ontario.