NIOSH Posts Health Disparities In Manufacturing

                               

Washington, DC (CompNewsNetwork) - The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) discovered that one of the central features of the contemporary U.S. workforce is that it is increasingly diverse, reflecting the changing demographic characteristics of our nation. In 2008, 15.6% of the U.S. employed labor force identified themselves as foreign-born:1 19.2% were white non-Hispanic or Latino, 49.4% were of Hispanic ethnicity, and an estimated 12.8% were employed in the Manufacturing Sector. In 2008, 3.8% of all employed workers were age 16-19 (1.4% in Manufacturing) and 18.4% were over 55 (18.1% in Manufacturing). Approximately 4% of workers in the U.S. labor force identify themselves as disabled.
 
Differences in work-related injuries and illnesses, mortality and exposures to occupational hazards between specific working populations, such as racial and ethnic minorities, older and younger workers, workers with developmental disabilities and immigrant workers are defined as Health Disparities. Health Disparities, including those resulting from work exposures, exist across racial and ethnic populations. Disparities arise from overrepresentation of racial and ethnic minorities in hazardous industries. Barriers created by social, cultural and economic issues including language, literacy, marginal economic status, lack of information about different types of work-related hazards, and the incomplete dissemination of occupational health and safety interventions to certain worker populations result in Health Disparities.

NIOSH's goal is to reduce injuries, illnesses and fatalities among understudied and vulnerable populations, such as contract workers, older and younger workers, immigrants, women of child bearing age, etc.

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