Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 72615
Post Injury Experiences of New Immigrant Workers

Authors: Janki Shankar, Shu Ping Chen

Abstract:

Background: New immigrants are one of most vulnerable sections of the Canadian society. Unable to gain entry into Canada’s strictly regulated professions and trades, several skilled and qualified new immigrants take up precarious jobs without adequate occupational health and safety training, thereby increasing their risk of sustaining occupational injury and illness compared to Canadian born workers. Access to timely and appropriate support is critical for injured new immigrant workers who face additional challenges compared to Canadian born workers in accessing information and support post-injury. The purpose of our study was to explore the post-injury experiences and support needs of new immigrant workers who have sustained work-related injuries. Methods: Using an interpretive research approach and semi structured face to face qualitative interviews, 27 new immigrant workers from a range of industries operating in two cities in a province in Canada were interviewed. All had sustained work-related injuries and reported these to their work supervisors. A constant comparative approach was used to identify key themes across the worker experiences. Results: Findings reveal several factors that can shape the experiences of new immigrant workers and influence their return-to-work outcomes. Conclusion: Based on the insights of study participants, policies, practices, and potential interventions informed by their needs and preferences are proposed that can improve return to work outcomes for these workers.

Keywords: new immigrant workers, post-injury experiences, return to work outcomes, qualified

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