Altered Lives Project: Year End Review 2016
Year End Review 2016
The UFCW Locals 175 & 633 Altered Lives Project aims to promote participation in the development of healthy, safe and supportive work environments and relationships. Injury and illness continue to occur in our workplaces and it has become more challenging to gain fair compensation.
The solution requires a concerted effort by everyone in our workplaces to prevent injury and illness. We must recognize and control all hazards that could cause harm to anyone in the workplace. We must ensure that proper training takes place for all employees. And we must report things that are unsafe so that those issues can be fixed.
In 2016, Altered Lives featured several stories of workers who were injured on the job. The stories illustrate the devastating impact of a workplace injury, and how the lives of workers, family, friends and co-workers are forever changed.
An Altered Lives Project display featuring the stories of these four Members is now in place at the Local Union’s Mississauga Office. You can also read our stories online at in Checkout magazine or through the website.
This fall, over the course of several training sessions, the Local Union asked Members in attendance to fill out a survey to gather some feedback on the Altered Lives Project.
A large number of the Members were unfamiliar with the Project. After reading the stories, they indicated almost unanimously that the Project could have a positive impact on how people relate to health and safety in their workplaces.
They touted social media as an effective way of reaching our younger members. They also endorsed face-to-face communication through Health & Safety Reps or Stewards, at Union meetings, at training events, at workplace meetings, or at workplace information sessions. They also suggested placing Project materials in the workplace break rooms, on workplace posters, and on bulletin boards.
The survey confirmed that many of these Members had experienced workplace injury or illness, and/or knew of co-workers that had. Approximately 50% of the respondents had filed a WSIB claim during their working life.
Forty per cent felt that the training they received from their employer was inadequate for the jobs they were doing. They expressed concern about lack of training for new hires, and a lack of ongoing and refresher training. A few indicated that health and safety training was non-existent in their workplaces and others commented on a lack of commitment from management. There was a fairly even distribution of how responders rated their employers (high, average, and low) on how much priority those employers give health and safety.
Thank you to those Members who completed the survey. We appreciate your thoughts and we will use the information going forward with the Altered Lives Project.
Workplace injury prevention is a shared responsibility among workers, employers, co-workers, unions and the community. Please share these stories so we can prevent workplace illness and injury in the future.
All the Best in 2017!