The Political Economy of Workplace Injury in Canada
284 pages, 5 1/2 x 8 1/2
Release Date:01 Jun 2010

The Political Economy of Workplace Injury in Canada

Athabasca University Press
Workplace injuries are common, avoidable, and unacceptable. The
Political Economy of Workplace Injury in Canada
reveals how
employers and governments engage in ineffective injury prevention
efforts, intervening only when necessary to maintain standard
legitimacy. Barnetson sheds light on this faulty system, highlighting
the way in which employers create dangerous work environments yet pour
billions of dollars into compensation and treatment. Examining this
dynamic clarifies the way in which production costs are passed on to
workers in the form of workplace injuries.
Bob Barnetson is an assistant professor of labourrelations at Athabasca University. He has worked for the Alberta LabourRelations Board, the Alberta Workers’ Compensation Board, and theAlberta government.

Introduction  1

Part One. Employment Relationships inCanada  11

Part Two. Preventing Workplace Injury  27

Development of occupational health and safety in Canada  28

Canada’s OHS system today  42

Conclusion  46

Part Three. Critique of OHS in Canada 47

Recognizing injury and hazards  48

Regulating workplace hazards  59

Conclusion  85

Part Four. Political Economy of Preventing Workplace Injury 89

Why regulate ineffectively?  89

Injury in the new economy  99

Conclusion  103

Part Five. Compensation of Workplace Injury 105

Workers’ compensation in Canada  106

Injury recognition revisited  111

Conclusion  122

Part Six. Worker Benefits and Claims Management 125

Earnings-loss benefits 126

Other benefits 129

Funding workers’ compensation 135

Conclusion 143

Part Seven. Managing Workers via Injury Compensation 145

Claim adjudication and administration 147

Appeals 150

Privatization and abolishment 157

Precarious employment 167

Conclusion 171

Part Eight. Conclusion  173

Notes; Select Bibliography; Index

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