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New York City, NY, United States

Jayaraman S.,Restaurant Opportunities Center | Dropkin J.,Restaurant Opportunities Center | Siby S.,Restaurant Opportunities Center | Alston L.R.,Restaurant Opportunities Center | Markowitz S.,Restaurant Opportunities Center
Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine | Year: 2011

Objective: We characterized the health and safety conditions of New York City restaurant workers, a population comprising largely of immigrants and people of color. Methods: We conducted an anonymous questionnaire survey of 502 New York City restaurant workers, addressing working conditions, benefits, demographic factors, psychosocial exposures, and medical symptoms and conditions. Results: Restaurant workers reported fast-paced, repetitive, and physically demanding jobs that sometimes involve chemical exposures. Despite their youth, they experience a high prevalence of musculoskeletal and traumatic injuries. Few receive job benefits despite significant symptoms. Job-related injuries are positively associated with practices that pose a danger to consumers. Conclusions: New York City restaurant workers have stressful jobs, experience significant injury, and illness but receive few job benefits. A healthier work organization and greater access to benefits for restaurant workers would improve their health and public health. Copyright © 2011 by American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine. Source

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