Ireland: New study finds decrease in workplace injuries in recession

New research from the Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI) has found that the rate of workplace injuries in Ireland declined between the start of the boom and the peak of the recession.

The ESRI’s study, Trends and Patterns in Occupational Health and Safety in Ireland (3 MB PDF), shows that the workplace injury rate fell from 29.6 per 1,000 workers in 2001 to 18.9 per 1,000 workers in 2012. (This includes all injuries regardless of whether they resulted in an absence from work).

Breaking the 2001–2012 period into ‘boom’ (2001–2007) and ‘recession’ (2008–2012) periods, the study finds the latter period had a 'significantly lower probability of occupational injury and illness than the boom period'.

The ESRI report also finds that highly variable hours are linked to higher injury and illness risks. This, the report says, 'is important in the light of the emergence of zero-hours and minimum hours contracts, and to the increasingly permeable boundaries between working time and leisure/family time due to technological change'.

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