Whether they work a part-time job while attending college, or they are starting their first full-time position, it can be a little intimidating for young workers to enter the workforce. They want to make a good impression and they dream of starting their careers.
However, younger workers in Georgia should also be acutely aware of the risk of injuries they could face in the workplace.
Study: Work injuries still high for younger workers
Younger workers only make up roughly 13% of the workforce. And yet, they often face a higher rate of work injuries than other age groups.
This has been true for many years, but a recent study determined that:
- Workers between the ages of 15 and 24 face an injury rate 1.2 to 2.3 times higher than workers age 25 to 44
- Of those, workers aged 18 and 19 suffered the most injuries
- The most common injuries workers in this age group suffered were lacerations and puncture wounds
The injuries this age group faces are often nonfatal, but they should still ensure they are careful at all times on the job and work to avoid risk.
Why do younger workers face this higher risk?
There are a few reasons that young workers suffer more injuries on the job than many others, including:
- They often work in jobs involving more hazards, such as retail jobs
- Their jobs often require a fast pace, again like retail work
- Part-time workers especially deal with a lack of safety training
On top of these risks, younger workers generally do not have the experience to either recognize serious hazards on the job or avoid injuries.
Parents: You can make a big difference
By the time young workers enter the workforce, they likely value their independence. However, parents can still offer advice that can keep their children safe on the job.
Parents can review the resources provided by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) that highlight young workers’ rights, as well as tips to increase their safety such as:
- Not being afraid to speak up when they notice hazards
- Asking for more training
- Understanding their rights
Even though young workers, whether part-time or full-time, may be entitled to collect workers’ compensation if they suffer an injury on the job, it is important to take steps to avoid injuries and stay safe.