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July 2006
Vol. 7, no. 7

Perspectives on Labour and Income

Is the workplace becoming safer?
F. Curtis Breslin, Peter Smith, Mieke Koehoorn and Hyunmi Lee

  • Between 1990 and 2001, work injury claim rates declined 4.6% in Ontario (from 5.2 to 2.5 per 100 full-time equivalents) and 3.0% in British Columbia (from 6.1 to 4.1).
  • Although injury rates declined more for men than for women over the period, women still had lower overall rates in both provinces.
  • The service sector had lower injury rates than the goods sector in both provinces in 1990 and 2001, with B.C.'s rates continuing to be slightly higher than Ontario's in each category.
  • In both provinces, injury rates continued to be highest for young workers aged 15 to 24 and lowest for workers over 50.

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The authors are with the Institute for Work and Health, Toronto, Ontario. Curtis Breslin can be reached at (416) 927-2027, ext 2225 or

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