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1.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 19(4)2022 02 16.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1706144

ABSTRACT

The prevalence of precarious employment has increased in recent decades and aspects such as employment insecurity and income inadequacy have intensified during the COVID-19 pandemic. The purpose of this systematic review was to identify, appraise, and synthesise existing evidence pertaining to implemented initiatives addressing precarious employment that have evaluated and reported health and well-being outcomes. We used the PRISMA framework to guide this review and identified 11 relevant initiatives through searches in PubMed, Scopus, Web of Science, and three sources of grey literature. We found very few evaluated interventions addressing precarious employment and its impact on the health and well-being of workers globally. Ten out of 11 initiatives were not purposefully designed to address precarious employment in general, nor specific dimensions of it. Seven out of 11 initiatives evaluated outcomes related to the occupational health and safety of precariously employed workers and six out of 11 evaluated worker health and well-being outcomes. Most initiatives showed the potential to improve the health of workers, although the evaluation component was often described with less detail than the initiative itself. Given the heterogeneity of the 11 initiatives regarding study design, sample size, implementation, evaluation, economic and political contexts, and target population, we found insufficient evidence to compare outcomes across types of initiatives, generalize findings, or make specific recommendations for the adoption of initiatives.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Occupational Health , COVID-19/epidemiology , Employment , Humans , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2
2.
Int Arch Occup Environ Health ; 95(4): 765-777, 2022 May.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1474009

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: The aims of the study were: (1) to clarify the definitions of "migrant" used in occupational health research; (2) to summarize migrant workers' industry sectors, occupations and employment conditions; (3) to identify the occupational health and safety services available to migrant workers; (4) to summarize work-related health problems found among migrant workers; (5) to identify the methodological challenges to research into occupational health of migrant workers; and (6) to recommend improvements in migrant occupational health research. METHODS: This position paper was prepared by researchers from several European countries and Australia, working within the EU COST Action OMEGA-NET. The paper drew on two recent systematic reviews on the occupational health of international migrant workers and other literature, and also identified uncertainties and gaps in the research literature. Migrants may, for example, be temporary or permanent, moving for specific jobs migrants or other reasons. Their ethnicity and language capabilities will affect their work opportunities. RESULTS: The occupational health literature seldom adequately identifies the heterogeneity or characteristics of the migrant group being studied. Migrants tend to work in more physically and mentally demanding environments with higher exposures than native workers. Migrants tend to have an increased risk of physical and mental ill health, but less access to health care services. This has been demonstrated recently by high rates of COVID-19 and less access to health care. There have been a number of cross-sectional studies of migrant health but few long-term cohort studies were identified. Other study designs, such as registry-based studies, surveys and qualitative studies may complement cross-sectional studies. Mixed-methodology studies would be valuable in research on migrants' occupational health. Language and lack of trust are barriers to migrant research participation. CONCLUSION: Targeted research, especially longitudinal, identifying how these economically important but often-vulnerable workers can be best assisted is needed. Researchers should identify the characteristics of the migrant workers that they are studying including visa/migration circumstances (temporary, permanent, undocumented), racial and ethnic characteristics, existing skills and language abilities.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Occupational Health , Transients and Migrants , Cross-Sectional Studies , Humans , Occupations
3.
Scand J Work Environ Health ; 47(7): 509-520, 2021 10 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1359380

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: High-quality longitudinal evidence exploring the mental health risk associated with low-quality employment trajectories is scarce. We therefore aimed to investigate the risk of being diagnosed with common mental disorders, substance use disorders, or suicide attempt according to low-quality employment trajectories. METHODS: A longitudinal register-study based on the working population of Sweden (N=2 743 764). Employment trajectories (2005-2009) characterized by employment quality and pattern (constancy, fluctuation, mobility) were created. Hazard ratios (HR) were estimated using Cox proportional hazards regression models for first incidence (2010-2017) diagnosis of common mental disorders, substance use disorders and suicide attempt as dependent on employment trajectories. RESULTS: We identified 21 employment trajectories, 10 of which were low quality (21%). With the exception of constant solo self-employment, there was an increased risk of common mental disorders (HR 1.07-1.62) and substance use disorders (HR 1.05-2.19) for all low-quality trajectories. Constant solo self-employment increased the risk for substance use disorders among women, while it reduced the risk of both disorders for men. Half of the low-quality trajectories were associated with a risk increase of suicide attempt (HR 1.08-1.76). CONCLUSIONS: Low-quality employment trajectories represent risk factors for mental disorders and suicide attempt in Sweden, and there might be differential effects according to sex - especially in terms of self-employment. Policies ensuring and maintaining high-quality employment characteristics over time are imperative. Similar prospective studies are needed, also in other contexts, which cover the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic as well as the mechanisms linking employment trajectories with mental health.


Subject(s)
Employment/statistics & numerical data , Mental Disorders/epidemiology , Substance-Related Disorders , Suicide, Attempted/statistics & numerical data , COVID-19 , Female , Humans , Incidence , Longitudinal Studies , Male , Mental Disorders/complications , Middle Aged , Prospective Studies , Risk Factors , Sex Factors , Substance-Related Disorders/epidemiology , Substance-Related Disorders/etiology , Sweden/epidemiology
4.
Syst Rev ; 10(1): 195, 2021 06 30.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1318294

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Precarious employment is a significant determinant of population health and health inequities and has complex public health consequences both for a given nation and internationally. Precarious employment is conceptualized as a multi-dimensional construct including but not limited to employment insecurity, income inadequacy, and lack of rights and protection in the employment relation, which could affect both informal and formal workers. The purpose of this review is to identify, appraise, and synthesize existing research on the effectiveness of initiatives aiming to or having the potential to eliminate, reduce, or mitigate workers' exposure to precarious employment conditions and its effects on the health and well-being of workers and their families. METHODS: The electronic databases searched (from January 2000 onwards) are Scopus, Web of Science Core Collection, and PubMed, along with three institutional databases as sources of grey literature. We will include any study (e.g. quantitative, qualitative, or mixed-methods design) evaluating the effects of initiatives that aim to or have the potential to address workers' exposure to precarious employment or its effects on the health and well-being of workers and their families, whether or not such initiatives were designed specifically to address precarious employment. The primary outcomes will be changes in (i) the prevalence of precarious employment and workers' exposure to precarious employment and (ii) the health and well-being of precariously employed workers and their families. No secondary outcomes will be included. Given the large body of evidence screened, the initial screening of each study will be done by one reviewer, after implementing several strategies to ensure decision-making consistency across reviewers. The screening of full-text articles, data extraction, and critical appraisal will be done independently by two reviewers. Potential conflicts will be resolved through discussion. Established checklists will be used to assess a study's methodological quality or bias. A narrative synthesis will be employed to describe and summarize the included studies' characteristics and findings and to explore relationships both within and between the included studies. DISCUSSION: We expect that this review's findings will provide stakeholders interested in tackling precarious employment and its harmful health effects with evidence on effectiveness of solutions that have been implemented to inform considerations for adaptation of these to their unique contexts. In addition, the review will increase our understanding of existing research gaps and enable us to make recommendations to address them. Our work aligns with the sustainable development agenda to protect workers, promote decent work and economic growth, eliminate poverty, and reduce inequalities. SYSTEMATIC REVIEW REGISTRATION: PROSPERO CRD42020187544 .


Subject(s)
Employment , Occupational Health , Humans , Systematic Reviews as Topic
5.
Int J Health Serv ; 51(2): 226-228, 2021 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1067025

ABSTRACT

The world of work is facing an ongoing pandemic and an economic downturn with severe effects worldwide. Workers trapped in precarious employment (PE), both formal and informal, are among those most affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Here we call attention to at least 5 critical ways that the consequences of the crisis among workers in PE will be felt globally: (a) PE will increase, (b) workers in PE will become more precarious, (c) workers in PE will face unemployment without being officially laid off, (d) workers in PE will be exposed to serious stressors and dramatic life changes that may lead to a rise in diseases of despair, and (e) PE might be a factor in deterring the control of or in generating new COVID-19 outbreaks. We conclude that what we really need is a new social contract, where the work of all workers is recognized and protected with adequate job contracts, employment security, and social protection in a new economy, both during and after the COVID-19 crisis.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Employment , SARS-CoV-2 , Humans , Pandemics , United States
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