Working conditions and health

What are the effects of work, workplace and labour force conditions on the health and safety of workers and other members of society? Institute for Work & Health (IWH) research in this area seeks to understand the context in which government, sector-based and workplace injury and disability prevention programs operate. This research explores known and emerging injuries, diseases and disorders that are related to job, workplace and/or labour market conditions. It looks at the scope, potential causes and risk factors for these injuries and illnesses, as well as their effect on workers, workplaces, regulators and society as a whole.

Latest news and findings

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Help design ways to support the future employment of young people with disabilities

Are you a young person living with a disabling health condition? Do you have direct experience supporting young people with disabilities? Or do you have expertise in policy, labour markets, disability and employment or strategic foresight?

If you answer yes to any of the above, we invite you to take part in an online activity aimed at designing better future work supports for young people with disabilities. For more information about this study, please contact Kay Nasir by emailing knasir@iwh.on.ca.

Find out more
Silhouettes of construction workers against an orange sky

Benefits outweigh costs when protection from UV radiation is offered to construction workers

Ultraviolet radiation due to sun exposure is one of the most common causes of work-related cancer in Ontario. A new study by IWH examines the costs and benefits of providing protective clothing and shade shelter to avert work-related non-melanoma skin cancer over 30 years.

Read about the study
A line drawing of a male figure slumped in a chair, head in hand

How much does depression set Canadian workers back in earnings?

Does depression hurt the earning potential of affected workers in Canada and, if so, how much? That was what IWH Research Associate Kathleen Dobson set out to find. Using an innovative technique, she calculated the average drop in workers’ earnings in the first year after workers experienced a depressive episode—and how much ground they continued to lose over 10 years.

Read about the findings
Drawing of a young man falling backwards as he stands astride a widening crack in the floor.

Nine trends in the future of work that may impact vulnerable workers

In the next two decades, the world of work will look very different than it does today. Major forces are driving change: digital technologies, artificial intelligence, climate change, demographic shifts, and more. What does the future hold for people who already face barriers in the labour market? In a new project report, an IWH team led by Scientist Dr. Arif Jetha lays out nine trends and what they may mean. A summary of the report is also available in At Work. 

Read the full report
A woman in a wheelchair works from her home office

Disability and Work in Canada conference videos are now available

The devastating impact of COVID-19 on employment for people with disabilities was a major theme at the annual Disability and Work in Canada conference, held late last year. But participants also heard about ongoing initiatives on strengthening income support, promoting workplace inclusion, measuring progress—and many others that make up a pan-Canadian strategy to improve paid employment opportunities for persons with disabilities. Conference videos are now available at the Centre for Research on Work Disability Policy conference page

Read about conference highlights