Workplace safety is often an important issue for employees in Massachusetts and across the country. Too many workers lost their lives in workplace accidents every year. In fact, last year 32 Massachusetts workers died due to work-related accidents and injuries. A dangerous workplace increases the risk of injury and death that an average worker faces by a large margin. It is critical that employers follow all safety guidelines established by their industries and the government.
That number is lower than the preceding year's total of 58 worker deaths; however the number is now on the rise again after falling in past years. These statistics come courtesy of a recent report that urges the government to employ stricter enforcement measurements when it comes to worker safety. The co-author of the report also serves as the executive director for the Massachusetts Coalition or Occupational Safety and Health and stresses that following national safety standards 'that work' can absolutely increase workplace safety.
Those who authored the report chose to release it just in time for the 25th annual Workers' Memorial Day in late April. This observance is a time to reflect on those who have lost their lives on the job in the past, and a good time to plan for how such deaths can be decreased in the future. One of the report's authors pointed out that following safety standards is just as important, if not more so, in tough economic times like the nation currently faces. Cutting corners on safety does not save money in the long run in the event of serious workplace accidents.
Those Massachusetts workers who have already suffered an accident in a dangerous workplace may be relieved to know that they likely have the right to file for workers' compensation benefits. These benefits can allow a worker to rest easier at night knowing that their medical expenses related to a job injury will be taken care of in most circumstances. Further, workers may be able to have part or all of their wages covered during the time they are unable to work; yet another burden removed from their shoulders during an already difficult time.
Source: Worcester Telegram & Gazette, "Report puts spotlight on worker safety," Brian Boyd, May 5, 2013