Under-Reporting of Workplace Illness and Injuries

Stephen A. Mitchell
UAW Local 974 Plant Wide Safety Chairman
and Member of UAW National Joint Committee on Safety and Health

SteveVisiting Partner Steve Mitchell’s project investigated the issue of under-reporting workplace illnesses and injuries in a large manufacturing plant in the Midwest. His research used self-administered surveys of workers and existing data from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). Through his study design and implementation as well as data from regulatory agencies, he gained a keen insight into the many factors affecting under-reporting. Steve found that workers, employers, and regulatory agencies all have a stake in the reporting of workplace illnesses and injuries, and that the various tensions between these stakeholders likely are a major factor in their under-reporting.