Determinants of health and safety in unionized and non-unionized firms in Ontario’s construction sector
Reasons for the study
The construction sector in Ontario and beyond experiences high rates of work injury, death and disability, so understanding the factors that improve health and safety outcomes in the sector are important. Earlier research from the Institute for Work & Health found that union-certified firms in Ontario’s industrial, commercial and institutional (ICI) construction sector have 20 per cent fewer lost-time, musculoskeletal and critical injury workers’ compensation claims than non-unionized firms. This project aims to identify the workplace policies and practices associated with lower rates of work-related injury and disease among Ontario construction workers, and how these potentially differ in unionized and non-unionized workplaces.
Objectives of the study
- To understand the union and employer drivers of injuries and illness
- To describe how unions and union-certified firms contribute to lower lost-time, musculoskeletal and critical injuries
The result of this research will be relevant to the construction sector, unions, Ontario Ministry of Labour, Workplace Safety and Insurance Board, and other policy-makers and prevention partners. As well, the research may help inform the public discourse on whether certain public-sector construction projects should continue to be restricted to union-certified firms in Ontario.
Related interviews and articles
Ontario Construction Secretariat
Workplace Safety & Insurance Board
Ontario Ministry of Labour's Research Opportunities Program