Friday, November 02, 2007

New Zealand: Workers Over 65 Have Largest Injury Rate

A report from Statistics New Zealand derived from Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC) claims shows that workers aged 65 years and over sustained work-related injuries at a rate considerably higher than any other age group. Thus, while those workers aged 65 years and over comprised 2.4% of the workforce, approximately 9,100 (20%) suffered some form of injury at work in 2006. In addition, workers in this age group accounted for 24 of the 81 claims lodged for work-related fatalities.

The report--Injury Statistics--Work-related Claims: 2006--also shows that older workers were over-represented among the more serious injury claims, which were those requiring weekly compensation or rehabilitation payments, at a rate almost three times higher than any other age group, with 45 per 1,000 full-time equivalent workers (FTEs).

Source: Statistics New Zealand Media Release (October 30, 2007)

Age Concern New Zeland calls these statistics "rubbish." "This claim is needlessly alarming older people and employers. The increasing number of seniors participating in the workforce is one of the great success stories of positive ageing, but this could put the fight against ageism in workplaces back by years," says Age Concern National President Jill Williams. He adds: "A greater proportion of older workers work part-time: but they've been rolled together in the stats to make full-time equivalents, and that's then being compared with individual ACC claims."

Source: Age Concern New Zealand Press Release (November 4, 2007)

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