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Hispanic workers in the United States: an analysis of employment distributions, fatal occupational injuries, and non-fatal occupational injuries and illnesses.

Richardson-S; Ruser-J; Suarez-P
Safety Is Seguridad: A Workshop Summary. Communicating Occupational Safety and Health Information to Spanish Speaking Workers, San Diego, May 29-30, 2002. Washington, DC: National Academies Press, 2003 Jan; :43-82
The United States Census Bureau predicts that by the year 2050 Hispanics will represent one out of every four persons in the United States, up from about one in eight in 2000. Driven largely by immigration, this dramatic growth in the Hispanic population will continue to present new challenges in health care, education, and the workplace. The results from the 2000 Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries (CFOI) program show higher fatal work injury rates for Hispanic workers than for other racial/ethnic groups-rates that appear to be increasing even as fatal work injury rates for most other United States workers are declining. Non-fatal occupational injury and illness rates are also higher among Hispanic workers. Employment distributions tell us that Hispanic workers tend to be more heavily represented in higher-risk industries and occupations than non-Hispanic whites and other racial/ethnic groups. The question becomes to what extent are these higher fatality rates explained by this disproportionate representation of Hispanics in higher-risk industries and occupations. Also, what differences can be seen between the experience of foreign-born Hispanic workers and native-born workers in the occupational injury and illness data? National data also tell us that the challenges in occupational safety and health are not limited to those states traditionally associated with large Hispanic populations, such as California or Texas but will impact numerous other states not traditionally known for large Hispanic populations. Hispanic communities are growing rapidly in states such as North Carolina, Arkansas, and Georgia. Moreover, the nature of the occupational injuries and illnesses differs from State-to-State and is largely determined by the industries within each state. It is necessary to have reliable and comprehensive data to formulate appropriate and measurable strategies to address these challenges. In terms of surveillance of occupational injuries and illnesses for Hispanic workers, the data tell an interesting but incomplete story. Many gaps still exist in the data, especially in the non-fatal injury and illness data for Hispanic workers. This paper summarizes the data on the demographics of the Hispanic population (including employment data) and presents an overview of the available surveillance data for fatal work injuries and non-fatal occupational injuries and illnesses for Hispanic workers. The data are from the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Occupational Safety and Health Statistics (OSHS) programs.
Occupational-health-programs; Occupational-safety-programs; Racial-factors; Worker-health; Mortality-data; Demographic-characteristics; Education; Information-processing; Occupations
Scott Richardson Program Manager, CFOI Bureau of Labor Statistics Postal Square Building 2 Massachusetts Avenue, N.E. Washington, DC 20212-0001
Publication Date
Document Type
Conference/Symposia Proceedings; Interagency Agreement
Funding Type
Interagency Agreement
Fiscal Year
NTIS Accession No.
NTIS Price
NIOSH Division
Source Name
Safety Is Seguridad: A Workshop Summary. Communicating Occupational Safety and Health Information to Spanish Speaking Workers, San Diego, May 29-30, 2002
Performing Organization
National Academy of Sciences, Washington, DC