Healthy Work Agenda

For Individuals

The Healthy Work Agenda is designed to promote understanding, discussions, and actions that advance “healthy work.” (See Principles of Healthy Work to learn more.)

Created to support the Healthy Work Campaign, the Agenda is a set of actions that can support and promote “healthy work.” Those actions are part of an effort to encourage “thinking big” about what’s needed to create healthy work in the U.S.

The Agenda can start a conversation or support existing discussions or activities. Individuals, employers, unions and worker organizations can support just one or a range of action items listed.

To get started:

➔  Print the Agenda to display on your desk.
➔  Post it on an employee forum or chat group.
➔  Tell your union leadership or labor council about it.
➔  Discuss it at a worker center meeting.
➔  Share with a supervisor, HR liaison or wellness program coordinator.
➔  Share it with friends and family via email or social networks.

Read on. And be sure to let us know how you’ve used it, and what happened.


The Healthy Work Agenda
For Individuals*

Spread the message that if we want healthy people, we need healthy work.

  • Healthy work can prevent illness and early death. (See Research.)
  • Healthy work reduces the cost of healthcare and increases well-being. (See Costs.)
  • Reduce common work stressors (sources of stress at work) to improve health and create a healthy workplace. (See Principles of Healthy Work.)

Change the culture of work in the U.S.

  • Challenge the culture of long work hours and expecting people to be available to work 24/7 by demanding fair pay, flexible work schedules and respect for our non-work roles.
  • Discredit the message: “Be glad you have a job. If you don’t like it, leave.”
  • Call for policies preventing workplace bullying, sexual and other harassment, retaliation, or discrimination.

Change the organization of work in the U.S.

  • Support public policy or laws (e.g., family leave laws) that encourage employers to change work practices and policies to create healthy work.

Strengthen the American worker’s voice and labor power to create healthy work.

  • Look for, and participate in, opportunities to make decisions about your job and workplace that aim to create healthy work.
  • Fight for and support workers’ rights to act together, join a union, and bargain with employers about healthy working conditions.
  • Support or join worker-owned businesses and co-operatives.

Advocate for, and support, enforcement of existing health and safety regulations and expanding them to include “healthy work” guidelines.

  • Learn about health and safety regulations (e.g., for chemical and safety hazards, ergonomics, right-to-know) and how to report violations.
  • Support the movement to include work stressors as a hazard in state and national regulations, as other countries do.

*Taking action on your own is difficult, especially about invisible hazards like work stressors. It’s easier to do these things with others, so buddy up and don’t try to go it alone. Look for support/help from co-workers, family, and community organizations (e.g., faith-based, worker centers, COSH groups, consumer rights, environmental health). The federal law (National Labor Relations Act) protects you when you and others take “concerted action” about these kinds of health and safety issues.

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