Tabor Village Safety Innovations
July 22, 2015 | News
Tabor Village is a part of the Tabor Home Society, a 118-bed complex care home that dates back to 1959. Located in Abbotsford, B.C., Tabor Village is one of many care homes in the province using innovative methods to create a positive health and safety culture in the workplace.
Tabor Village has a number of programs in place to encourage positive health and safety habits in the workplace. One way they found to increase involvement is through the use of theme months. Recently, they had their “Minimizing aggression” themed-month, which focused on violence prevention. This themed month involved a number of activities and outlets for the staff to learn about violence prevention, including an informative newsletter and an information fair with fun things for the staff to do like crosswords and contests. Overall, Tabor has found that using a variety of different educational mediums that are fun, inspire friendly competition, and recognize staff members’ contributions to be particularly effective in increasing staff engagement.
Another way Tabor Village is promoting positive health and safety culture is by visually communicating safety trends. For example, Tabor’s First-Aid Board tracks every injury or incident that has occurred on site. This way, staff can visually see the number of incidents and track trends, which in turn increases staff awareness of the importance of safety at work.
A third initiative in place is their Purple Dot program. This program arose out of a need for staff to be informed on which residents had a history of violence in a way that respected the resident and was obvious and easily accessible to staff. Tabor Village uses small “Purple Dots” in specific places on the outside and inside of the residents’ room to provide a visual flag for all staff, including non-care staff, without embarrassing or demeaning the resident.
The Joint Occupational Health and Safety (JOHS) Committee at Tabor Village is responsible for reviewing and creating initiatives that have to do with health and safety. With the guidance of the JOHS Committee, the care workers themselves are ultimately empowered to carry the initiatives out.
After experimenting with ways to connect with staff, Tabor Village found that themed months were the most effective way of getting staff engaged and involved. Within these themed months, they found that rewarding staff with prizes or certificates after completing training is also an effective tool to increase participation and recognize staff members’ contributions. They now use this approach with the majority of their programs and initiatives.
The most significant change as a result of these safety programs is the involvement of the staff. Through the use of creative and fun activities and incentives, Tabor Village has been successful in encouraging staff to become more engaged when it comes to these safety initiatives. “When we first put up that First-Aid Board…people would walk by and say ‘Wow!’,” said Susanne Fehr, JOHS Committee Co-Chair and manager of Tabor’s housekeeping and laundry department. “The injuries were down that first year because I think people really had safety on the mind.”
If you would like to learn more about the safety and health programs in place at Tabor Village, you can contact Corina Castronuovo, human resources manager, by email at CCastronuovo@taborvillage.org or by phone at 604-859-8715 (ext. 143).
Click here to watch a “Success Story” about Tabor Village.