California study: Low-wage workers in L.A. rarely use comp system
The report by the University of California-Los Angeles' Institute for Research on Labor and Employment highlighted the findings of a 2008 survey of 1,815 low-wage workers in Los Angeles County. According to researchers, this population regularly experiences violations of basic employment laws that govern minimum wage and overtime pay, payroll documentation, and employer retaliation.
When it comes to workers' compensation, the study found that only 4.3 percent of low-wage respondents who experienced a serious on-the-job injury during the previous three years had filed a claim. Of those who were seriously injured, 42.3 percent reported that they were required to work despite their injury, 30.3 percent said their employer refused to help them with the injury, and 12.6 percent were fired shortly after the injury.
Researchers found that slightly over half (51.3 percent) of respondents who experienced a serious injury at work sought medical attention. However, within this group, only 48.6 percent indicated that their employers paid any part of their medical bills.
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March 15, 2010
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