Strategies for improving safety and health of ethnic minority construction workers

Chan, Albert P.C., Javed, Arshad Ali, Lyu, Sainan, Hon, Carol K.H., & Wong, Francis K.W. (2016) Strategies for improving safety and health of ethnic minority construction workers. Journal of Construction Engineering and Management, 142(9), Article Number-05016007.

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The construction industries of developed countries are faced with an aging workforce and a shortage of recruits. It is common for migrant workers/ethnic minorities (EMs) who are already part of the society to join the construction industry. With increasing involvement of EMs in the construction industry, effective strategies for improving their safety and health are urgently needed. The existing body of knowledge is mainly derived from research conducted in English-speaking countries with Western cultures. Research on safety of migrant/EM construction workers in multidialect Asian countries with Eastern cultures has been lacking. This study aimed to identify various strategies for improving the safety and health of EM construction workers from the Asian perspective. Twenty-two face-to-face semistructured interviews were performed with safety professionals in Hong Kong followed by two rounds of Delphi survey with 18 safety experts to verify the interview findings and rank the relative importance of the strategies. The study unveiled 14 strategies for improving the safety performance of EM workers. The three most important ones identified were:

  • (1) to provide safety training in EM native languages;

  • (2) that government and industry associations should play an active role in promoting health and safety awareness of EM workers, and;

  • (3) to encourage EM workers to learn the local language.

This study contributes to filling the research gap by evaluating the strategies for improving safety of migrant/EM construction workers in Asian countries with Eastern cultures in which English is not the first language. Research findings would assist occupational health and safety experts and relevant stakeholders in designing strategies for improving the safety and health of EM workers, which will ultimately improve overall safety performance of the construction industry.

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ID Code: 95587
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: construction safety and health, safety management strategies, ethnic minorities, hong kong, labor and personnel issues
DOI: 10.1061/(ASCE)CO.1943-7862.0001148
ISSN: 0733-9364
Divisions: Current > Schools > School of Civil Engineering & Built Environment
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Science & Engineering Faculty
Copyright Owner: 2016 American Society of Civil Engineers
Deposited On: 16 May 2016 22:55
Last Modified: 28 Sep 2016 03:19

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