Vulnerability at work

“Vulnerable” is a word often used in the health and safety world to describe those who are at an increased risk of work injury or disease. But who is vulnerable, and why. Understanding “vulnerability” due to personal, workplace and labour market factors remains a key research theme of the Institute for Work & Health (IWH). This research looks at rates of vulnerability and measures to identify, assess and prevent it. It also looks at workplace, system and government programs and policies to address vulnerability.

Latest news and findings

Illustration taken from the tool

Working with a rheumatic disease: a new tool for young people

Young people with rheumatic health conditions such as juvenile arthritis or lupus face unique challenges as they begin their working lives. A new tool is now available to help them navigate these challenges. "Working with a rheumatic disease" is an interactive tool designed to help young people identify potential challenges and find information and trusted resources to overcome them. It was developed by the Institute for Work & Health with support from Cassie + Friends and funding from the Centre for Research on Work Disability Policy.

See the tool
Three women wearing masks talking to each other at work

A new IWH Speaker Series season begins with a presentation on safe work for newcomers

After an extended break due to COVID-19, the IWH Speaker Series is back—this time online only. The new season kicks off on October 13, with a presentation by IWH Associate Scientist Dr. Basak Yanar. She discusses research findings on the safe work integration of newcomers, the perspectives of employers and the experiences of immigrant-serving organizations. To find out more and to register, visit the IWH Speaker Series page.

Find out more
Logo for World Congress COVID-19 and occupational safety and health digital meeting in October 2020

World Congress 2021 hosting free ‘COVID-19 and OSH’ virtual session in early October

Registraion is now open. On October 5, 2020, a half-day special session on COVID-19 and occupational safety and health (OSH) is being offered by the organizers of the 2021 World Congress on Safety and Health at Work—and IWH is among them as a national co-host of the global event. This free, virtual session will feature thought-leaders discussing innovations in addressing COVID-19 in the workplace, how the future of work is being shaped by the global pandemic, and the relevance of promoting a culture of prevention to address COVID-19. Additional sessions are also being organized for October 6, 2020.

Register now
A woman with a bandaged left arm fills out injury claim form

Exposure to known hazards a factor in injury reporting: Institute study

What factors may be linked to workers reporting or not reporting their work-related injuries to a workers’ compensation board? An Institute for Work & Health (IWH) study, building upon previous research on rates of under-reporting, finds workers are more likely to report their injuries when they are exposed to known hazards or have greater awareness about occupational health and safety.

Read more
A roomful of people listen intently to workshop presenter

Supporting settlement agencies to provide OHS information to newcomers

Newcomers to Canada face a higher risk of workplace injury and illness. That’s due in part to a lack of knowledge about their occupational health and safety (OHS) rights and responsibilities. Settlement agencies can help raise this awareness, but they also need support from the prevention system to do so. That’s according to a recent project involving IWH and several partner organizations.

Read about the project