Death on the Job More Likely for U.S. Latinos and Immigrants Than Other Groups - Report
"Death on the Job: The Toll of Neglect," a newly published report, found that U.S. Hispanic/Latino workers are 18 percent more likely to be killed on the job than workers of any other racial/ethnic group. Furthermore, immigrants face greater risk.
The American Federation of Labor-Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO) released the publication that reported Latino workers lead with 817 deaths on the job in 2013. Overall, 4,585 U.S. workers experienced workplace injuries that resulted in their death. Also, an estimated 50,000 workers died from occupational diseases, resulting in a loss of nearly 150 workers daily due to precarious working conditions. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, unintentional injuries continue to be the third leading cause of death among U.S. Hispanic Latinos.
"The disturbing rate of death on the job within the Latino community makes clear the pressing need to ensure that all workers to have a greater voice in the workplace," said AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka in a release. "Congressional inaction on a path to citizenship and abusive employer practices have left millions of Latino workers in the shadows. The time is now to lift their voices, strengthen their protections, and ensure that everyone has access to good jobs that are safe jobs."
AFL-CIO shared statistics from 2013, which stated that the number of Latino workers killed on the job rose significantly from the year prior, increasing from 748 to 817. The highest number of deaths occurred in California (194), followed by Texas (92) and Florida (68). Nearly half of all worker deaths in California were among Latinos in 2013, a 42 percent in Latino deaths following the year before.
Furthermore, Latinos face the greatest job-related dangers in the construction and landscape industries. The number of Latino deaths among pruners and tree trimmers doubled between 2012 and 2013. Also, Latino deaths in the oil and gas sector doubled since 2010. When it comes to the construction industry, 241 Latinos were killed.
According to AFL-CIO, immigrant workers experience the highest risk of death on the job. Immigrants widely experience employer exploitation and face retaliation if they raise job safety concerns, inquire about rights or pursue demands. There has been a 19 percent increase in the number of immigrant workers suffering fatalities in the construction industry alone. In 2013, a stunning 66 percent of all Latino worker deaths were among immigrants, and 87 percent of Latinos landscaping deaths were immigrant workers.
For 24 years, AFL-CIO has published findings on health protections and the state of safety for workers in the United States. The most recent report was released just after numerous Workers Memorial Day rallies, vigils and rallies were spurred across the nation.
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