Cloth­ing work­ers are most un­healthy in re­gion

Middleton Guardian - - LEISURE - AN­NIE GOUK

CLOTH­ING man­u­fac­tur­ing has the un­health­i­est work­ers in Greater Manch­ester, new anal­y­sis has revealed.

An in­ves­ti­ga­tion into fig­ures from the Of­fice for Na­tional Sta­tis­tics by our sis­ter pa­per the M.E.N. has revealed those in the in­dus­try are nearly twice as likely to be in bad or very bad health as other work­ers in the re­gion.

In some areas as many as one in ev­ery 20 peo­ple em­ployed in the man­u­fac­ture of clothes is in poor health.

At the same time, work­ers in this sec­tor are some of the least well paid out of any of the in­dus­tries.

On aver­age, peo­ple em­ployed in cloth­ing man­u­fac­tur­ing take home just £14,771 a year, com­pared to the aver­age of £23,474 a year for all em­ploy­ees.

Within some areas of Greater Manch­ester, work­ers in other in­dus­tries can be more un­healthy than those mak­ing clothes, how­ever.

In Old­ham, for ex­am­ple, work­ers in­volved in man­u­fac­tur­ing bev­er­ages are more likely to be un­healthy, with around one in ev­ery 25 em­ploy­ees in poor health.

Mean­while, in Sal­ford one in ev­ery 20 peo­ple who make elec­tri­cal equip­ment are in bad or very bad gen­eral health.

Re­spond­ing to the fig­ures, Dan Shears, from GMB, the trade union, said: “It is scan­dalous that work­ers’ health con­tin­ues to be so badly af­fected by the ig­no­rance and in­ac­tion of em­ploy­ers.

“Laws were in­tro­duced more than 40 years ago re­quir­ing em­ploy­ers to safe­guard the health and safety of work­ers.

“No one ex­pects work to be risk free, but the risk should be re­duced as low as pos­si­ble then man­aged.

“We are par­tic­u­larly con­cerned about those neg­li­gent em­ploy­ers who know that their work is caus­ing se­ri­ous harm, and are happy to let the state deal with the con­se­quences through the NHS.

“The eco­nomic con­se­quences are pro­found – more than £14bn per year.

“The only way to tackle this sit­u­a­tion is to re­cruit more in­spec­tors and for them to fully en­force the law.”

Dean Wal­ford and Zoe Hop­kiss from Spec­savers Mid­dle­ton

Fig­ures have revealed the cloth­ing in­dus­try has the un­health­i­est work­ers in Greater Manch­ester

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