SafeCare BC applauds provincial government for investing in safety for health care workers
December 9, 2019 | News
SafeCare BC is applauding the provincial government for committing, as part of the latest round of collective bargaining, $8.5 million over the next three years to support a recently announced agency, which will help support workplace safety in health care.
“Investing in health and safety is not only the right thing to do but will also help ease the chronic shortage of health care staff by ensuring that these highly skilled workers aren’t off work because of injury,” says Jen Lyle, CEO SafeCare BC. “Health care workers have some of the highest injury rates compared to any other sector in BC. The good news is that over the past five years, the injury rate for our members in long-term care has decreased 12 percent, while in home care, the rate has declined 19 percent. Our members are outperforming the sector average”
This positive shift has happened because of an intentional commitment, coordinated focus and dedicated investment in workplace health and safety. Together, employers, workers and industry partners are striving to build a safety culture.
“The education that I’ve received through SafeCare BC has helped me become a better care giver, and now as a peer facilitator I am able to take what I have learned and teach other health care workers,” says Bryan Gay, a care aide, who has been working in health care for the past 15 years. “Workplace wellness and safety is important and it’s great for continuing care workers to have an organization they can rely on for education and resources.”
Since our founding in 2014, we have delivered education to nearly 12,000 continuing care workers and leaders across high-priority streams, including safe handling, violence prevention, dementia education, and mental wellness. We have facilitated peer-to-peer learning through our Peer Resource Network and created sector-specific resources to meet the sector’s needs, including safety huddles, policy templates and toolkits, and instructional videos.
We’re seeing positive results from organizations that have embraced our Tailored Outreach Program, which supports them in improving their workplace health and safety culture. And we’ve taken innovative approaches to sharing safety knowledge through initiatives such as the Safety Den, Hearts and Hands conference for health care assistants, the Safety Innovations Database, and the SafeCare BC app.
While the details of what initiatives this new agency will undertake have yet to be released, we look forward to working with them and supporting eligible SafeCare BC members in taking advantage of the additional resources to be offered by the new agency, while continuing to improve access to safety resources for all continuing care organizations and workers.
Founded in 2014, SafeCare BC is a non-profit association working to ensure injury free, safe working conditions for the more than 28,000 continuing care workers in BC. Over the past five years continuing care organizations across BC have collectively invested over $5.5 million in workplace health and safety to respond to the sector’s challenges.
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To schedule an interview, contact:
Ken Donohue, Director, Communications and Member Services