Why do young workers in developing countries have so many injuries?
By Sean Coughlan
Unsafe workplaces have the kind of casualty rates more likely to be associated with going to war rather than earning a living.
Every year there are 2.8 million deaths because of accidents at work or from work-related diseases.
And every single day more than a million people have a serious accident or injury at work – whether in falls on badly regulated building sites or from using dangerous machinery in factories.
The figures are from the International Labour Organisation (ILO), the UN’s agency for working conditions, which this week published a report asking why so many of these accidents seemed to involve teenage workers.
Guy Ryder, director general of the ILO, says: “152 million children, who should be in school, are working. And almost half of those children are engaged in hazardous work.”
“For youth who are old enough to enter the labour force, the available data shows that they experience a 40% greater incidence of injury on the job than their older counterparts.”
Photo courtesy of Cecilia Schubert.