From 1992 to 2013 the on-the-job death rate decreased overall but during the same time period the work-related death rate among Latinos increased. Latinos over 16 years old make up just 15.6% of the population but constitute nearly one-third of the workers in the construction and natural resource extraction industries which tend to include some of the more hazardous occupations. Hispanics’ over representation in the dangerous jobs is compounded by the fact that many cannot read safety instructions.
Employers often take chances with the work-hungry Hispanics who often are illegal and thus less likely to report injuries. Non-fatal injuries often go unreported. Fatal accidents get reported because, in the words of the National Council for Occupational Safety and Heath, “it’s harder to hide a dead worker.
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