What's new

Graphic illustration of coronovirus over world map
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IWH and COVID-19: Message from the President, Dr. Cam Mustard

At the Institute for Work & Health (IWH), we have implemented a number of workplace social distancing measures. Most of us are working remotely. We have cancelled events scheduled to take place in the near term. We are conducting all meetings virtually.

We know we are in the fortunate position of being able to work remotely. To the health-care workers, emergency service providers, airline and transit personnel, retail employees and others on the front lines, we thank you wholeheartedly for your important work.

You will continue to hear from us through our newsletters, website and social media channels. In the meantime, we wish you the best in these difficult times. Stay safe and be well.

Dr. Cameron Mustard 
President, Institute for Work & Health

Close-up of two pairs of hands, belong to a counsellor and a patient sitting on a couch
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Access to mental health services among workers with physical injuries

Among workers with a compensation claim for a work-related musculoskeletal injury, 30 per cent also experience a serious mental condition. However, a minority of these workers receive treatment for their mental health conditions, according to an Institute for Work & Health study conducted in Australia.

blurry photo of people, potentially workers, walking through downtown
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IWH postpones upcoming forum on newcomers and safety

Due to circumstances related to COVID-19, the Institute is postponing the Safe Work Integration of Newcomers Forum, originally scheduled to take place March 30. We will announce a new date as soon as we know. We continue to monitor updates from public health officials regarding other events due to take place in the spring. They include the annual Systematic Review Workshop, scheduled for mid-May, as well as future IWH Speaker Series presentations.

A hard hat, placed next to a check list, against a black background
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Can an eight-item questionnaire pick up on real-world differences in OHS practice?

How well can a set of eight questions capture something as broad and multi-faceted as an organization’s occupational health and safety (OHS) policies and practices? An Institute for Work & Health (IWH) team conducted interviews and worksite visits at organizations that had completed the eight-item leading indicator tool, called the IWH-Organizational Performance Metric. It found consistent patterns in how high- and medium-scorers approach OHS.

A close-up of a man's hand, holding a joint
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IWH Speaker Series: Cannabis at work pre- and post-legalization

Now that the non-medical use of cannabis is legal, how much has changed in workers’ use of, and attitudes about, cannabis at work? Find out at an IWH Speaker Series presentation on March 3, when IWH Associate Scientist Dr. Nancy Carnide shares early results from her surveys of workers pre- and post-legalization.

 

Japanese craftsperson stands in front of his workstation, smiling
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What helps workers with MSDs, pain or mental health conditions return to work?

What workplace-based interventions are effective in helping workers with musculoskeletal disorders, pain and/or mental health conditions return to work (RTW)? What does the research literature say about the effectiveness of case management, work hardening, physician training and other practices on RTW outcomes? Our new Sharing Best Evidence summarizes findings of a systematic review.

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Using coroner data to examine role of cannabis in workplace deaths among recently funded IWH projects

Exploring the use of coroner data to understand the impact of cannabis on work-related deaths, anticipating future labour-market challenges facing young people with disabilities, tracking long-term outcomes for workers’ compensation claimants: these are just some of the new projects under way at IWH, thanks to external grants awarded over the past year.

A woman studies data and charts projected on a screen
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IWH Speaker Series presentation: Introducing a new CSA standard on work disability management systems

On February 4, CRWDP director and IWH Senior Scientist Dr. Emile Tompa introduces a new standard created by the CSA Group, in conjunction with the Centre for Research on Work Disability Policy (CRWDP) and Conestoga College. At the IWH Speaker Series presentation, Tompa discusses how the Work Disability Management Systems Standard (CSA Z1011) sets out best practices on injury/illness rehabilitation, return-to-work plans, and accommodation of workers with disabilities.

A worker in a wheelchair sits with colleagues in a busy office
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Pan-Canadian strategy on disability and work unveiled at conference

After two years of extensive consultation with a host of stakeholders, the pan-Canadian strategy on greater inclusion of people with disabilities in the labour market is now out. The strategy was unveiled in December at the 2019 Disability and Work in Canada Conference, where participants looked ahead for opportunities to make progress with concrete, achievable initiatives.

A close-up of a hand placing down building blocks
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Building capacity in the settlement service sector to promote OHS awareness among newcomers

Newcomers to Canada are at increased risk of workplace injury and illness, due in part to a lack of knowledge about their rights and responsibilities in occupational health and safety (OHS). IWH was recently involved in a project focused on supporting settlement agencies to promote OHS awareness among newcomers. In an upcoming IWH Speaker Series presentation, IWH's Dr. Basak Yanar joins Eduardo Huesca of Occupational Health Clinics for Ontario Workers (OHCOW) to talk about OHS capacity-building workshops for settlement agencies. They also discuss opportunities for Ontario’s OHS system partners to further support the settlement sector.