The City of Chicago is considering the benefits of implementing a comprehensive risk management program, something they, unlike most major cities across the United States, do not have in place. The continued absence of such a program for the City, say some, has left employees at risk for injuries and death and has cost the city millions.
Preventing Workplace Injuries
One of the benefits of a risk management plan is its focus on injury prevention. In 2013-14, the city of Chicago paid over $200 million in workers’ compensation claims to those injured on the job. Most cities of comparable size in the United States, have a comprehensive strategy for risk management in place. Taking proactive measures to prevent injury and illness in the workplace not only keeps employees safer, it keeps costs lower. Those who have implemented such programs also report a better workplace culture and better productivity, due to increased training and support.
Keeping employee policies up-to-date, evaluating the reason behind injuries that have already happened and taking a close look at the risks that exist in the employment environment lowers the chances that an employee will fall victim to an injury. Thorough inspections of the workplace environment and elimination of dangerous practices is a must for employers that want to minimize risks.
The Benefit of Risk Management for Employees
OSHA recommends such risk management programs, which encourage employers to identify and control hazards and improve the environment in which their employees work. Each day, over 10,000 workers are injured or become ill on the job. Medical bills and the loss of income due to missed work because of an injury can cripple a family’s finances. The workers’ compensation system provides a means for workers to avoid financial ruin when a workplace injury occurs.
Employers who consistently review their practices and make positive steps to keep their employees safe are generally viewed as more positive places to work. Any employee who begins a new job, whether for government entity like the city of Chicago or a private employer should thoroughly review workplace policies and be aware of what to do if they are injured on the job. A Chicago workers compensation attorney can provide additional information regarding workplace injuries and the responsibilities of employers.