Occupational health and safety performance in Ontario's unionized construction sector

Reasons for the study

During 2012 and 2013, the Institute for Work & Health collaborated with the Ontario Construction Secretariat—a tripartite union/employer/provincial government organization that aims to enhance the well-being of the organized Industrial, Commercial and Institutional (ICI) construction sector in Ontario—to compare the incidence of work-related injury and illness between unionized and non-unionized contractors in the ICI sector over the period 2006-2012. This original study found that unionized contractors had lower lost-time workers' compensation claim rates and higher no-lost-time claim rates, concluding that unionized contractors may encourage occupational injury reporting and reduce risks through training and hazard identification and control practices. This project will replicate the methods of the previous study, updating the time period to 2012-2017.

Objectives of the study

  • To replicate the methods of a previous IWH study to determine if the differences in occupational health and safety performance between unionized and non-unionized contractors that were observed during the period 2006-2012 are present in the period 2012-2017. 

Anticipated results/impact

The results of this research project will be relevant to the construction sector, unions, policy-makers (including the Ontario Ministry of Labour and the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board) and other prevention partners.

Project status

Ongoing

Research team

Funded by

Ontario Construction Secretariat