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Housekeepers may have fewer workers' compensation claims soon

A particular section of the workforce in California will soon benefit from a unanimous decision by the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health. Authorities have taken note of the lobbying by the workers union for hospitality workers for improved and stricter safety standards. Once new regulations are in effect, there might be fewer workers' compensation claims for injuries suffered by employees in this industry.

Housekeepers in hotels are now recognized as the behind-the-scenes backbone of the industry. However, while those who stay in hotels expect everything to be spotless and in place, few realize the harm suffered by workers who overexert themselves every day. Housekeepers have to lift heavy mattresses that could weigh up to 100 pounds, push heavy cleaning carts, and vacuum miles of passages, reception areas and rooms without breaks.

These workers often have to maintain awkward body postures or make repetitive motions for hours on end. Bending, twisting, pushing, pulling and lifting form the bulk of the daily procedures of housekeepers -- frequently causing long-term health consequences. Claims for musculoskeletal injuries, along with sprains, strains, and tears of muscles and tendons, may be less prevalent once employers in this industry must comply with new, stricter safety regulations -- expected to become effective in April.

However, even with new safety measures, some California employers may continue to disregard the health and safety of housekeepers. Those who suffer the consequences of such violations may be entitled to seek financial assistance with medical expenses and lost wages. They may utilize the support and guidance of an experienced workers' compensation attorney to help with the navigation of the complicated claims process.

Source: safetyandhealthmagazine.com, "Cal/OSHA unanimously approves standard to protect hotel housekeepers", Jan. 25, 2018

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