When we answer the phones at NWJP, more and more often we hear from workers who have been hurt at work. In response, we have formed a new Coalition that will focus on workers' occupational safety and health, Safe Jobs Oregon. This Coalition will work to improve worker safety for traditional workers, as well as contingent, temporary and other low-wage workers.
Though workplace fatalities and serious injuries are decreasing overall, both are increasing among Latino workers, especially those that are foreign-born. At the same time, employers are moving away from offering full-time employment, instead relying on independent contractors, temporary workers and day laborers. These workers are often not covered by protections like workers’ compensation, unemployment insurance, and paid sick leave, yet they are often doing the most dangerous jobs.
We are comprised of representatives from organized labor, community groups, legal organizations, and others from around the state.
Some issues we will focus on are:
- The workers' compensation system, and retaliation for using the system
- The dangers of working at high temperatures without proper protections. We will work to have Oregon enact a “heat stress standard,” which neighboring states have already done.
- Better communication between Oregon OSHA and workers.
Safe Jobs Oregon will work to ensure that all workers have the right to safe workplaces and adequate remedies if they are hurt at work.
Please contact Kate Suisman at email@example.com for more information or if you would like to get involved.