In terms of workplace health and safety risks, day laborers are among the most vulnerable labor groups in the U.S. Day laborers are often hired to perform the dirtiest, most difficult and dangerous jobs. Reports show that migrant workers are injured, suffer, and die on the job at a higher rates than native-born workers because they undertake dangerous jobs, in construction, landscaping, and roofing, for example, with little or no training at all. Language barriers and misunderstandings of governmental agencies usually compound the problem. Unaware of where they can turn and fearful of losing their jobs, most migrant workers do not report hazards on the job to OSHA or to their employers. Some remain silent even after they have suffered a work related injury or .
The National Day Laborer Organizing Network (NDLON) and our member organizations are doing important work in the field of workers’ rights and have been working to address health and safety needs since 2001. Through our Day Laborer Health and Safety Project, we have established a core of 11 organizations that are trained on health and safety issues and able to offer health and safety trainings across the country as well as to work with cooperatively with OSHA and other organizations on this topic. In addition, we have created innovative popular education curricula that address health and safety from the day laborer perspective, and in a way that is most easily understood and applied by the workers themselves.