Unhealthy Contractors a Safety Risk Too

A workplace injury can happen at any time, and often, it catches contract workers by surprise. When those workers are under the weather, it can be difficult for them to have the necessary focus to complete their daily tasks.

Many of these illnesses, like a cold of the flu, generally only require someone to be out only a few days of work. Under sick-leave policies employees receive a set amount of hours that they are allowed to be absent from work when they are not feeling well.

While employees are entitled to paid sick leave contractors often do not enjoy the same benefits. With each contract paycheck or progress payment so important, many such workers are reluctant to miss any time from work.

Contractors may feel that if they are not at work every day that their clients may start looking for someone who will.

A new study has taken a closer look at the relationship between sick workers and workplace injuries. The study, released in the American Journal of Public Health examined the impact of sick-leave policies and workplace safety. In employees with paid sick leave, there was a 28 percent lowered risk for workplace injury. Employees that were paid to recover from their illnesses were less likely to cause injury to their fellow workers.

However those workers who did not take time to address their health issues had to take more extensive medical leaves in the future.

A healthy workforce is a productive workforce and out recommendation is that even where contractors are used in a workplace many companies may need to examine policies that they have in effect to determine if they are jeopardizing the safety of their workers.


About the Author

Joanne Wallace is our resident "Safety Guru". Joanne has provided advice on safety management for the past 10 years and written hundreds of articles on safety issues and tips. Joanne has experience in many industries ranging from manufacturing, food processing, timber milling, retail, office and wholesaling providing her with knowledge and experience managing risk and injuries in these industries.

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