Introduction Despite the high-risk nature of construction jobs, this blue-collar workforce continues to provide unique opportunities for contingent (e.g., temporary) work. Compared to payroll workers, there is evidence suggesting temporary construction workers have a relatively higher risk of being injured at work, which may in part be as a result of inadequate safety training, high job demands, and low job control. Using a semi-structured focus group script, we collect qualitative data to characterise the workplace health and safety experiences, attitudes, and perceptions of temporary workers employed in the construction industry.
Methods Eight focus groups with 7–10 temporary construction workers per group will be conducted. The discussions will be conducted in English or Spanish and will be audio recorded and transcribed. Data collection began in March 2017 and will conclude July 2017. Focus group audio files will be transcribed verbatim and analysed using a general inductive approach to identify emergent themes.
Result Preliminary findings indicate that participating temporary workers (n=20) were mostly male (95.0%), non-Hispanic (84.2%), Black/African American (78.9%) with a mean age of 42.8 years (standard deviation [SD]=11.9), and employed as a temporary construction worker for an average of 2.9 years (SD=2.4). Among all participants, 40% had been injured at the construction site in the past 12 months, 52.6% reported receiving safety training at the start of their job, and 41.2% were trained when asked to conduct new job tasks. Major themes that emerged included: assessment of jobsite risk at the worker- and organizational- level; visual safety cues in risk assessment process; worksite protective factors.
Discussion Temporary construction workers in this ongoing pilot study reported high rates of worksite injuries. Strategies to improve training opportunities for temporary construction workers during new jobsite orientation and upon being asked to complete new job tasks are needed.
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