Background Immigrant Latino day labourers working in residential construction are at particularly high risk of fatal and non-fatal traumatic injury and benefit from targeted training.
Objective To understand the impact of a participatory, peer-facilitated health and safety awareness training customised to the needs of Latino day labourers.
Methods Baseline surveys exploring exposures, PPE use, attitudes, work practices and work-related injuries were collected from more than 300 New Jersey Latino day labourers in construction prior to their participation in a 1 day (minimum of 6 h) Spanish language health and safety training class. The classes, led by trained worker trainers, engaged participants in a series of tasks requiring teamwork and active problem solving focused on applying safe practices to situations they encounter at their worksites. Follow-up surveys were collected from 70 of these day labourers (22% response rate) 2–6 months following training.
Results Changes from baseline to follow-up revealed significant differences in the use of certain types of PPE (hard hats: alpha= 0.02; work boots with steel toes: alpha= 0.008; safety harnesses: alpha= 0.002 and visible safety vests: alpha= 0.04), and in the frequency of trying to self-educate about job hazards: alpha= 0.008). There was also a suggestive decrease in self-reported injuries (serious injuries the prevent completion of the work day: alpha= 0.07) post-training based on small numbers.
Conclusions Participatory, peer led training tailored to the needs of construction day labourers can have a positive effect on Latino immigrant workers attitudes, work practices and self reported injury rates.
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