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More than training: workers' rights centers empowering hazard awareness and response.

Authors
Forst-L; Ahonen-E; Zanoni-J; Sokas-R; Oschner-M; Kimmel-L; Martino-C; Rodriguez-E; Ringholm-E; Kader-A
Source
Atlanta, GA: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, R18-OH-009574, 2012 Nov; :1-17
Link
NIOSHTIC No.
20042354
Abstract
Background: Workplace mortality and severe injury are disproportionately distributed among foreign born and Hispanic construction workers. Worker Centers (WCs) provide services and advocacy for low wage workers and a way for investigators to reach them. The goal of this project was to prevent occupational injuries by increasing awareness of hazards and self-efficacy among foreign born, Hispanic construction workers and by expanding the agenda of WCs to include occupational health and safety (H&S). Methods: Investigators partnered with 8 WCs in 7 cities to train worker leaders to deliver a modified OSHA 10-hour curriculum on construction health and safety to their peers. Worker leaders were recruited and trained to recruit their peers and to deliver the course in a popular education format under the supervision of an OSHA authorized trainer. A mixed methods approach was used in the evaluation. A formative evaluation was conducted at all phases of the project. A survey of participants was conducted immediately before and after training, and after three months; pictorial and story survey items were introduced and tested as a way to survey this population. Worker leaders were observed in training and interviewed about their experiences. WCs were interviewed at the end to ascertain the value and sustainability of this program in their WC. Results: 32 worker leaders trained 463 workers in 25 sessions over three years, totaling 4545 worker-hours of training; 446 OSHA 10-hour cards were issued. Among participants, 1/3 reported speaking English well or very well, and 61% had less than a high school education; ~18% had worked in the US for less than five years, and 54% for more than 10 years. There was a demonstrated improvement in knowledge from before to after the training on prevention of falls (p=0.003) and electrocution (p=0.0001), hazard identification (qualitatively assessed in pictorial and story survey items), self-efficacy (qualitatively assessed through 3-month follow up interview of participants), and sustainable health and safety activities in the worker centers (reported by 7 of 8 WCs in final interviews). Conclusions: This study provides evidence for successful implementation of an effective peer-educator training intervention for low-wage, low-literacy Hispanic construction workers using a community based participatory research (CBPR) approach. The success of this program is indicated by: an increase in knowledge and self-efficacy on the part of workers; and the reported value to the WC's mission--synergy of the program's methods with those of the WCs, sustained H&S activity in seven of the eight WCs, and the further dissemination of H&S training using some or all of the elements of this program. Background: Workplace mortality and severe injury are disproportionately distributed among foreign born and Hispanic construction workers. Worker Centers (WCs) provide services and advocacy for low wage workers and a way for investigators to reach them. The goal of this project was to prevent occupational injuries by increasing awareness of hazards and self-efficacy among foreign born, Hispanic construction workers and by expanding the agenda of WCs to include occupational health and safety (H&S). Methods: Investigators partnered with 8 WCs in 7 cities to train worker leaders to deliver a modified OSHA 10-hour curriculum on construction health and safety to their peers. Worker leaders were recruited and trained to recruit their peers and to deliver the course in a popular education format under the supervision of an OSHA authorized trainer. A mixed methods approach was used in the evaluation. A formative evaluation was conducted at all phases of the project. A survey of participants was conducted immediately before and after training, and after three months; pictorial and story survey items were introduced and tested as a way to survey this population. Worker leaders were observed in training and interviewed about their experiences. WCs were interviewed at the end to ascertain the value and sustainability of this program in their WC. Results: 32 worker leaders trained 463 workers in 25 sessions over three years, totaling 4,545 worker-hours of training; 446 OSHA 10-hour cards were issued. Among participants, 1/3 reported speaking English well or very well, and 61% had less than a high school education; ~18% had worked in the US for less than five years, and 54% for more than 10 years. There was a demonstrated improvement in knowledge from before to after the training on prevention of falls (p=0.003) and electrocution (p=0.0001), hazard identification (qualitatively assessed in pictorial and story survey items), self-efficacy (qualitatively assessed through 3-month follow up interview of participants), and sustainable health and safety activities in the worker centers (reported by 7 of 8 WCs in final interviews). Conclusions: This study provides evidence for successful implementation of an effective peer-educator training intervention for low-wage, low-literacy Hispanic construction workers using a community based participatory research (CBPR) approach. The success of this program is indicated by: an increase in knowledge and self-efficacy on the part of workers; and the reported value to the WC's mission--synergy of the program's methods with those of the WCs, sustained H&S activity in seven of the eight WCs, and the further dissemination of H&S training using some or all of the elements of this program.
Keywords
Construction-industry; Construction-workers; Racial-factors; Injury-prevention; Injuries; Traumatic-injuries; Training; Education; Electrocutions; Occupational-hazards; Synergism
Contact
Linda Forst, MD, MPH, Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences, UIC School of Public Health, 2121 W. Taylor, MC 922, Chicago, IL 60612
Publication Date
20121130
Document Type
Final Grant Report
Funding Type
Grant
Fiscal Year
2013
NTIS Accession No.
PB2013-105838
NTIS Price
A03
Identifying No.
Grant-Number-R18-OH-009574
NIOSH Division
OEP
Source Name
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
State
IL; GA
Performing Organization
University of Illinois - Chicago
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