Category Archives: Health

Who Are the Main Caregivers for People with a Parkinson’s Diagnosis?

tips to manage caregiver stress and burnoutIt’s women, of course, who pick up the slack when our healthcare system neglects people. It’s either picking up the slack or being the excuse for systemic neglect.

The main informal caregiver was typically a woman (62%), lived in the same household (72%), and provided assistance on a daily basis (76%). For the most part, the recipient’s spouse was the main informal caregiver (64%).

http://www.statcan.gc.ca/daily-quotidien/141119/dq141119b-eng.htm?cmp=mstatcan

Will Today Be the Day You Die at Work?

 

 

Do you feel lucky, punk?
Well… do you?

Every day, four Canadians will die as a result of a workplace accident, injury or industrial disease.  If you make it home from work today, you are one of the lucky ones.

Statistically speaking, 1000 Canadian workers die annually as a result of workplace fatalities. This number is unacceptably high, despite Canada having some of the best health and safety laws in the world.

Employers continue to fail to ensure:

  • That their workers are safe on the job-site, with the right tools for the right job in the right place;
  • That workers have received adequate training and resources to equip them for the jobs they are being asked to do;
  • Advise workers  that they have the right to refuse to work in conditions that they (or others) perceive to be unsafe;
  • That accidents are reported, investigated and prevented from re-occurring.

In many Canadian jurisdictions, the ongoing monitoring of labour and safety standards continues to be cut back. So called “voluntary” industry compliance programs increasingly take their place.  Canada can, and should do much better to ensure the enforcement of  occupational and environmental health and safety regulations.

DayofMourning2005_AWCBC-194x300

 

April 28th is the National Day of Morning (Jour National De Deuil).  On this day, take pause from your workday to remember those who have lost their lives on the job, or as a result of occupational disease. It is a designated day to honour the families left behind, and contemplate action to demand safer work environments.  It is a daunting task in the wake of the ongoing growth of industry and construction in our nation.

Enough is enough.

It is time to enforce the law and bring employers who are negligent and dangerous to justice.

What can be done to reverse this trend?

  • Provinces and territories can appoint special prosecutors to lay charges against employers when their actions cause serious death, disease or injury.
  • Implement and enact new regulations that deal with known dangers in the workplace (violence, exposure to toxins/carcinogens, repetitive stress injuries, poor ergonomics, workplace harassment, stress) to ensure their prevention.
  • Hire more inspectors to ensure compliance.

All accidents are preventable.  Don’t become a statistic.  Come home safely.

2012Statisticsinfographic2

(source: AWCBC/ACATC)

 

Don’t Tolerate Ignorance About the Minimum Wage

Now, stop tolerating ignorance! And smile, TGIF.

Hello.

It’s Friday.

For many people it’s TGIF. But for many people who aren’t even teenagers, the work week isn’t ending today.

We often THINK minimum wage is for the new entries to the job market. Maybe it was one day. Maybe just for one day.

But today? If it isn’t a living wage, it’s exploitative.

And if it is just minimum wage, we are likely not too accurate on who is suffering with these low wages.

Let’s take a peek:

Continue reading Don’t Tolerate Ignorance About the Minimum Wage

How the Conservative Government Dishonours the Military

deletemeSo Canada is leaving its occupation of Afghanistan.

I never liked the mission. I never liked the context. I never liked the propaganda. I never liked the transformation of some kind of Canada into this occupying Canada.

162 killed and 2,179 wounded? But here’s the very very hard question. Who is the government NOT counting? They are the people the government is actively disowning, to the shame of all of us.

I’ll tell you who some of them are:

Continue reading How the Conservative Government Dishonours the Military

Mental Health and The Hypocrisy of #BellLetsTalk

Bell didn’t actually start any conversation about mental health, despite their PR.

So now that Bell has enjoyed PR-pimping mental health as a self-aggrandizing excuse to give money to Canadian mental health programs, I didn’t actually expect to see #MentalHealth trending in Twitter like #BellLetsTalk did yesterday, and to a lesser extent today. However, there are huge problems with this kind of charitable activity:

Continue reading Mental Health and The Hypocrisy of #BellLetsTalk

The NHL Gladiator Pimps

Risking player’s brain trauma for profit makes the NHL a gladiator pimp organization.

At some point, as estimates continue to roll in, the NHL accountants and lawyers will realize that reducing concussion risk in the NHL will make the league more profitable. The NHLPA needs to do a better job advocating for the health of its membership.

That will get me watching again, and my kids.

And that may be the only thing, aggravated by class action lawsuits, that get the game safer for players. Oh and the CBC getting rid of Don Cherry.

Here’s information from a recent study [emphasis is mine]:

Continue reading The NHL Gladiator Pimps

Ending Homelessness: Easy If You Simply Care

Homeless sleeping in American FlagIf we are a caring society. If we acknowledge that there are a myriad of reasons why a community’s homeless population is homeless. If we thought we should invest our tax dollars and take advantage of good research, good experience, good pilot projects and professionals to address homelessness and other problems. If we were interested in treating people as people instead of the poorn or poor bashing of dehumanizing people. If all this…we could fix homlessness and address many or all of the things that lead to homelessness and preventable human suffering. Here’s how.

Continue reading Ending Homelessness: Easy If You Simply Care

Greed + Government Cuts Erode Society [Bah, Humbug!]

The greedy and selfish among us are NOT on our side.

Happy Christmas Eve!

I hope you’re all giving lots of money to charities because ’tis the season and all that. But what happens if generally, as a society, we can’t or won’t give so much?

Coupled with public sector social service cuts, a decline in charitable giving creates preventable suffering.

But the Fraser Institute is a big fan of the charitable giving solution to public sector cuts. What do they have to say about that this year? It’s not good.

Continue reading Greed + Government Cuts Erode Society [Bah, Humbug!]

Fried Squirrels

It’s a crisp, foggy November Saturday morning in the south side of the city. Seventeen people sit in the large open area at the back end of an organic fair trade coffee shop run by a workers’ co-op inspired by the Mondragon movement in Spain. Meet-ups like this are quite common in this shop.

The male and female co-facilitators move briskly through the agenda with the help of the nodding volunteer maintaining the speakers list. There are sporadic jazz-hand gestures, common from the Occupy Movement, as well as a strict yet comfortable group norm of only one person speaking at a time, and succinctly, because of the elaborately carved talking stick that moves around the room.

Continue reading Fried Squirrels

How Does Violence at Home Affect Workplaces in Canada?

The WorkSafeBC domestic violence in the workplace toolkit includes animations depicting employer and employee responsibilities.
Worksafe BC at least isn’t keeping itself in the dark

Here is yet another stigma-laden, denial-inducing taboo topic in society and workplaces: domestic violence.

And when we connect violence at home to effects on people as workers in the workplace, we get lots of crickets. Continue reading How Does Violence at Home Affect Workplaces in Canada?