Young workers make up a significant portion of the workforce. Unfortunately, they are just as prone to accidents as any other workers, and maybe more so due to their relative lack of experience in their chosen fields. For one young man in the Vancouver area, a normal part of his work routine led to a nearly fatal workplace injury, and he is now on a campaign to warn other young workers about the importance of workplace safety.
Hazardous conditions may be present at any job site. For those whose work takes them out on the streets and highways of British Columbia, however, there is an extra element of danger present at all times. A recent accident in which a tow-truck driver suffered a grievous workplace injury clearly illustrates the ever-present risks for those who work while exposed to traffic.
Sometimes the wheels of justice turn slowly, especially when multiple parties are involved and investigations need to be conducted. When the incident in question involves a workplace injury, facts have to be gathered by both sides, and the resulting documents can be very long. A case currently before the courts involving a company from British Columbia illustrates the time required for justice to be served.
The film and television industry is a major source of employment in Vancouver and across British Columbia. Those working in the field have the opportunity to do what they love right in their own province. Unfortunately, just as in any industry, a workplace injury can happen at any time. One example comes out of a television shoot that took place earlier this month.
No one goes to work expecting to be hurt. However, the possibility of a workplace injury occurring is present for anyone, and so safeguards to minimize the risk should be in place. In recent local news, an unusual work-related accident occurred in metropolitan Vancouver that is now under investigation by authorities.
A story has surfaced in the BC media of allegations that safety may have been compromised for workers hired to clean ash that was generated in the Fort McMurray wild fires. The allegations of one employee from BC are of great concern.
A sales employee developed a progressive speech disorder (eventually diagnosed as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis or ALS) that caused slurred speech, but did not impact his cognitive function or ability to perform his job. His employer allowed him to continue to work using email and text to communicate. The worker alleges that his immediate supervisor made derogatory comments about the employee's intelligence, spoke to him condescendingly, called him a liar and sent him a racially offensive cartoon.
There is no question that health care workers play an important role in society. While providing care for others, many may not be aware that they could be putting their own health on the line. Readers may be surprised that British Columbia long-term health care workers are at a higher risk of being injured on the job than forestry workers, police officers or construction workers.
In an earlier post we wrote about a decrease in worker deaths in British Columbia last year. While this is undoubtedly good news overall, it does not tell the whole story regarding worker deaths. In at least one occupation, the number of workers who died last year actually increased. That occupation is construction workers. According to recent statistics, the number of construction workers who died last year was up 40 per cent.
When it comes to workplace injuries the first thing that comes to mind for most people is likely a serious accident, but this is not the only way in which a worker could be harmed on the job. In certain situations it is possible workplace conditions could lead to a worker becoming ill. A Canadian man, who worked at a mine more than 25 years ago, believes this is what happened to him.