Piloting a personal protection equipment distribution program among Chicago day laborers.
Am J Ind Med 2012 Feb; 55(2):159-166
Background: Occupational injury rates among day laborers have been estimated to be as high as 31%, where lack of personal protective equipment (PPE) use is repeatedly noted as a contributor to occupational injuries. Methods: We distributed duffel bags containing nine pieces of PPE and provided training on their use to Chicago day laborers during six distribution sessions over two summers. Participants were contacted 4-8 weeks post-distribution and queried on PPE use. Results: Of 117 participants who received the equipment, 42 completed the follow-up survey. Workers performed construction, demolition, and painting type tasks and most often used gloves, safety glasses, and respirators. Hardhats, coveralls, and earplugs were the least used. Conclusions: The PPE we provided was used during 94% of the jobs, and every one of the nine items was used. Hearing protection was underused. This project showed that providing PPE, along with training on its use, may increase PPE use among Chicago day laborers, likely preventing occupational injuries.
Worker-health; Racial-factors; Personal-protective-equipment; Injuries; Injury-prevention; Training; Health-surveys; Construction; Construction-workers; Hearing-protection;
Author Keywords: day laborers; personal protective equipment; PPE training; occupational injuries; Latino workers
Susan Buchanan, MD, MPH, The University of Illinois at Chicago, 2121 WestTaylor Street, Chicago, IL 60607
Grant-Number-T42-OH-008672; Grant-Number-T42-CCT-522954; B02012012
American Journal of Industrial Medicine
University of Illinois at Chicago