Most people in the United States spend 40 hours a week working. That is a lot of time to spend earning money, and considering how much time is spent in the workplace, it is understandable that workplace injuries are a risk to everyone. Unfortunately, the risk is more significant for some groups of people than it is for others. A recent study conducted by researchers from both the University of Southern California and Boston University found that Black and Latino workers are injured on the job more often than other workers. This is mainly due to the fact that Black and Latino workers are more likely to hold down riskier jobs, with construction work and labor trades being named specifically.
If you are Black or Latino, it is important to understand that you are at an increased risk of workplace injuries. Below are some tips for reducing your personal risk. Please read them and pass them on to friends and family.
How to avoid workplace injuries at a job that poses a greater risk of harm:
- Do not be afraid to question authority. Suppose your employer is asking you to do something dangerous. In that case, it is fine to inquire about safety procedures respectfully, and it is within your rights to refuse to do dangerous work.
- If you are dealing with a language barrier, make sure that you fully understand the instructions before performing a task with an increased risk of danger. It is ok to ask for clarification and for your manager to repeat their instructions until you understand.
- Follow every safety procedure to the letter. Do not skip a procedure that you do not entirely understand; it is likely there for a reason.
- Report all injuries to your employer. If you do not report your injuries, safety procedures cannot be updated for your own future safety or the safety of your coworkers.
It is deeply frustrating that certain groups of people are more likely to be hurt than others. The only way to begin to make it right is to identify the issue and take active steps towards making the workplace safe for Black and Latino workers. If you have been hurt on the job as a minority worker, you need legal representation. Contact the attorneys at Karns & Karns in Los Angeles. We have both the experience and cultural competency to help you win your case.