Work and health within broader societal context

Work has a role to play in producing and maintaining inequalities in population health. But broader conditions outside work—such as economic conditions, housing affordability and access to childcare—can impact employment quality and worker health and safety. Similarly, social and income support systems can shape the experiences of workers facing a job interruption, and accessibility legislation can impact employment opportunities for persons living with disabilities. Our research explores how workers and workplaces are affected by changes to labour, social and health laws and policies, as well as by macro economic and societal conditions.

Latest findings

Image of panel members from the March 2024 Opioids and Work workshop hosted by OCRC and IWH

Exploring how workplace solutions can mitigate opioid harms among workers

With the recognition that workplaces can play a part in responding to North America’s opioid crisis, the OCRC and IWH brought together over 100 occupational health specialists, government representatives, union advocates, researchers, and others to discuss how to prevent opioid harms among workers.
A man with his head in his hand looks at a row of empty pill bottles

Formerly injured workers have higher risk of opioid-related harms than the general population in Ontario

An IWH study found that formerly injured workers had higher risks of emergency department visits and hospitalizations for opioid-related harms than the general Ontario population across most occupation and industry groups,
A group of physician's sitting in a room, prepared to take notes.

Primary care physicians’ learning needs in returning ill or injured workers to work

While primary care physicians play an important role in helping ill and injured workers return to work (RTW), they have a variety of learning needs about how to best navigate the RTW process. These needs fall in the areas of completing administrative tasks, challenging personal beliefs, understandin