According to the most recent employment survey by the National Federation of Independent Business, 48% of small businesses are currently unable to fill their job openings. That is more than double the 48-year historical average of 22%. There are many potential reasons for the current labor shortage.
Many trade schools and licenses courses were suspended during COVID-19. Due to COVID concerns, some people are hesitant to return to work and work closely with others. Although it is easier for a person to have health concerns and stay out of the workforce when unemployment benefits are generous.
Additionally, childcare facilities are still reopening, making work difficult for adults with children. Others that are currently on unemployment argue that the minimum wage is not a great enough incentive for employees to return to work which is leading to a worker shortage.
The nation’s labor shortage is currently most severe in industries with a higher risk of injuries including:
The construction industry in particular is experiencing one of the most severe labor shortages right now. Sixty-six percent of construction worker firms report little or no qualified applicants for open positions.
Risks for Current Employees
For current employees in industries experiencing a labor shortage, the lack of personnel may lead to increased risk of injury. Due to a smaller staff, companies may demand longer shifts and overtime. This leads to overexertion, fatigue, and a greater risk of accidents.
A faster-paced work environment and increased pressure to perform may also lead to more workplace injuries and subsequent workers’ compensation claims.
While your employer may be short-staffed, it is more important than ever to handle a workplace injury appropriately. Though you and your coworkers may be under pressure to continue working during a crucial time, you need to take care of yourself first and foremost. Workplace injuries must be reported immediately. Wait too long, and you risk your claim being denied.
If you are injured while working during this unique time in our economy, we are here to help. Our Dugan & Associates workers’ compensation lawyers will work to pursue fair and just compensation for loss of earnings, damages, and medical expenses. Contact us today online or by telephone at 412-353-3572 to speak with a knowledgeable Pennsylvania workers’ compensation lawyer to get the treatment and compensation you deserve.