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Job stress issues in the Library of Congress/EPA Headquarters Indoor Air Quality and Work Environment Study.

Hurrell JJ Jr.; Sauter SL; Fidler AT; Wilcox TG; Hornung RW
Indoor Air '90, Proceedings of the 5th International Conference on Indoor Air Quality and Climate, Toronto, July 29 - August 3, 1990, 1990 Jul; :647-652
The role of job stressors in association with indoor air quality studies at the Library of Congress (LOC) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) was examined. Job stress and job strain were defined in relation to the physical and psychological effects induced in the worker. Job strains were grouped into psychological, physiological, and behavioral categories. Working conditions that produced strain reactions fell into four groups: job demands, organizational demands, interpersonal demands, and physical demands. Moderating factors which could influence the various worker responses to the same stressors included individual factors (age, tenure, self esteem); nonwork factors (marital, financial, and family status); and buffer factors (coping skills and support from friends). Answers to a 30 minute questionnaire used in this study indicated that work roles at the LOC and EPA were well defined, with 87% of LOC respondents and 73% of EPA workers reporting that their job responsibilities were either very often or fairly often defined. Low levels of job control were reported by 50% of LOC and 37% of EPA respondents when asked about their ability to influence policies in their work group. Work loads were perceived as high at both organizations. Underutilization of job skills was perceived as high, with 29% of LOC and 24% of EPA respondents reporting that they rarely or occasionally had opportunity to implement their skills in an ideal fashion. Glare from lighting was a common complaint at both locations, while chairs and work stations were generally reported as comfortable by nearly two thirds of respondents. The major nonwork demand was children at home. Overall, workers at both the LOC and EPA were generally satisfied with their jobs, with only 16% at LOC and 14% at EPA reporting job dissatisfaction. This preliminary analysis found that perceived control, skill utilization, and workload were areas for potential concern. The data did not allow for drawing conclusions about the contribution of job stressors to health complaints.
Closed-building-syndrome; Indoor-air-pollution; Air-quality-control; Office-workers; Psychological-stress; Questionnaires; Job-stress; Indoor-air-pollution; Physiological-stress; Indoor-environmental-quality
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Indoor Air '90, Proceedings of the 5th International Conference on Indoor Air Quality and Climate, Toronto, July 29 - August 3, 1990
Page last reviewed: July 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division