Conestoga news

November 13, 2020 9:11 AM

National research survey addresses impairment in the workplace

Conestoga’s Canadian Institute for Safety, Wellness & Performance (CISWP) has launched a survey to better understand how Canadian employers are currently addressing impairment in the workplace.

“We want to understand current organizational strategies and barriers to address impairment in the workplace and infom the development of evidence-informed resources,” said CISWP director, Dr. Amin Yazdani.

Workplace impairment is defined as a temporary physical, psychological or physiological state of the worker that has a negative impact on performance or creates a hazard in the workplace. Yazdani added that organziations need to develop strategies to address the issue, but small businesses, in particular, often have limited resources and expertise to develop and effectively implement important occupational health and safety policies and procedures.

Worplace impairment can be caused by fatigue, crises at home, substance use, caregiving responsibilities, experiences of sexual harassment or bullying, or other issues. Regardless of the cause, impairment can raise several concerns for employers including in­creased costs, absenteeism, reduced productivity and workplace morale, as well as safety concerns.

“The survey is designed to be completed by managers and supervisors, occupational health and safety professionals, human resource professionals, workplace program/policy developers and joint health and safety committee members across different sectors of the economy. Responses are completely anonymous and will not be linked to a specific employer,” said Bronson Du, CISWP’s research scientist and project manager for the study.

In combination with interviews and focus groups with relevant stakeholders, findings of the survey will be used to develop a series of recommendations to better manage impairment in the workplace.

To participate, visit:

This study is the second nationwide survey launched by CISWP. In October, Yazdani’s team also launched a research study to examine the work-from-home impacts on the health and well-being of the Canadian workforce.

The Canadian Institute for Safety, Wellness & Performance, located within Conestoga’s School of Business, works to improve the safety, wellness and performance of the Canadian labour force by generating knowledge, transferring research to practice and strengthening workforce development - all in collaboration with stakeholders.

For more information about this survey, contact Dr. Amin Yazdani or Bronson Du.