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Sitting down on the job can be bad for your health

September 21st, 2010 11:46am - Posted By: Denver Business Journal – by Paula Moore

One of the newest strategies for helping office employees stay healthy at work is one of the oldest urges felt by human beings — movement.

Office-space experts now encourage people to get up out of their chairs frequently and move, including stretching in the work space and taking a short walk outside.

Some experts even suggest workers use a sit-stand approach in their offices and cubicles — splitting their time there between sitting and standing.

To accommodate that way of working, more employees now use work surfaces that can be raised and lowered depending on a person’s position, as well as adjustable stands and arms for moving computer monitors.

“Your body is not designed to be static,” said Nick McElhiney, mechanical engineer, ergonomics consultant and owner of Ergonomic Evolution LLC in Erie. “The old way of thinking was if a worker didn’t move, he couldn’t hurt himself. But [the truth is tha ...



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Officials fight over workplace injury rule.

July 29th, 2010 4:39pm

By Joaquin Sapien, ProPublica

As the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the White House are trying to minimize their differences, a brewing battle at OSHA over a workplace injury reporting rule illustrates how tough that could become, given the administration’s pro-labor leanings.

While bureaucratic clashes over subtle rule changes like this one are usually waged outside the public’s view, they can have big ramifications for businesses and workers.

At issue is a regulation that would force employers to identify when a workplace-related injury or illness is considered a musculoskeletal disorder (MSD), a term broadly used to describe ailments caused by repetitive stress, like carpal tunnel syndrome or strains from frequent heavy lifting.

Figures gathered by the Bureau of Labor Statistics show that MSD-related problems accounted for nearly a third of the 1.1 million workplace injuries and illnesses in the private sector that led to days off w ...



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Understanding ergonomics at work and the benefits that go along with it.

July 29th, 2010 4:34pm

Reduce accidents and ill health and increase productivity by fitting the task to the worker.

You may have heard of the term ‘ergonomics’. This is sometimes referred to as ‘human factors’. Not everyone really understands what ergonomics is, what it does, or how it affects people. This leaflet will help to answer these questions and to explain how understanding ergonomics can improve health and safety in your workplace.

It is aimed at anyone who has a duty to maintain and improve health and safety and who wants to gain insight into ergonomics. It gives some examples of ergonomics problems and simple, effective advice on what can be done to solve them.

What is ergonomics?

Ergonomics is a science concerned with the ‘fit’ between people and their work. It puts people first, taking account of their capabilities and limitations. Ergonomics aims to make sure that tasks, equipment, information ...



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Under Obama, Labor Agencies Building up Budgets and Enforcement

July 29th, 2010 4:29pm

Some in the manufacturing community worry that an attempt to issue an OSHA ergonomics standard is on the way. By Josh Cable @ Industry Week

Labor historians agree: Over the past few decades, a change in political party at the White House usually signals a dramatic change in the federal government’s approach to labor policy.

“Absolutely. This is not a close call,” explains Robert Trumble, professor of management and director of the Virginia Labor Studies Center at Virginia Commonwealth University. “And the [U.S.] Chamber of Commerce and AFL-CIO see it the same way also.”

Washington, D.C.-based journalist Phil Dine, author of “State of the Unions: How Labor Can Strengthen the Middle Class, Improve Our Economy, and Regain Political Influence,” puts it this way: When a Republican administration is in power, unions are “ ...



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