Construction work can be a demanding and exhausting profession, with numerous health hazards for workers – particularly mental health issues.
People choose to work in the construction industry for many reasons, but it is important to be aware of some of its challenges. These obstacles can prove challenging for newcomers or experienced pros alike.
1. Lack of Experience
Construction is the backbone of Canada’s economy, yet this industry struggles to attract and retain staff. According to a recent survey, construction firms were facing several obstacles such as high material costs and an aging workforce.
One of the primary challenges faced by new workers is a lack of experience. To successfully enter into construction, it is essential that individuals receive proper training and learn how to perform specific tasks.
Those interested in working in the construction industry can begin by seeking advice from industry professionals. Additionally, they should look into training programs and career advancement opportunities available within this sector.
2. Unhealthy Working Conditions
Construction workers are exposed to a range of hazardous working conditions. This includes working with chemicals, hazardous materials and silica dust.
The workplace environment can have a major impact on workers’ health and job stress levels. Work-related pressure can lead to poor mental health as well as other issues.
Therefore, employers must take necessary precautions to make their workplaces secure for employees. This includes ensuring all workers are aware of potential hazards and how to stay secure on the job.
3. Lack of Pay
Contrary to expectations, wages in Ontario’s construction sector have not kept pace with consumer prices despite growing productivity. Over five years, real construction wages increased at just 1.9% per year (compared to 3.4% for all labour market wages), despite a remarkable 14% rise in labor productivity within the industry.
Desperate construction workers are facing serious difficulties with their paycheques. To address this situation, employers must improve their hiring practices and offer competitive salaries to attract top talent.
4. Long Working Hours
Long working hours are a real burden for many employees, especially those in construction. Not only can it lead to health issues like cardiovascular diseases and depression but it can also cause sleep disorders.
These issues can cause difficulties for workers trying to sustain their job and support their families. Therefore, finding ways to manage them effectively is essential.
This meta-analysis summarized the findings of studies from 1998 to 2018. It focused on long working hours and their effects on various forms of occupational health. Furthermore, it assessed associations with gender, diagnosis, study design, cut-off point for long working hours and working class.
5. Unfamiliar Work Environment
Construction workers in Canada often face unfamiliar environments that can lead to burnout and mental health issues. This is especially true after the COVID-19 pandemic, when a diminished labour pool and shifting job landscape have put construction workers at greater risk of stress, injury and burnout.
Fortunately, there are ways to overcome these difficulties and enhance the construction industry’s overall wellbeing and reputation. One solution is by creating a workforce that is diverse and inclusive of new Canadians, youth and women.
Unions and construction companies have the chance to foster an environment in which workers of all backgrounds feel accepted and valued at their workplaces. Making these changes will help address Canada’s shortage of skilled labour in this sector, creating a stronger, more vibrant future for everyone involved.