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August 26, 2014

Language Barriers and Safety Barriers

There's no question that immigrants helped build America, from the trans-continental railway to the skyscrapers of both coasts. Many spoke no English, but they learned just enough to do their job. In today's safety-conscious workplaces, language barriers create serious challenges for safety professionals. A big part of managing safety involves communicating rules and hazards to workers, but how effective can that be when there’s a language barrier - or multiple languages - on the same worksite?

The safety experts at Safety Management Group in Indianapolis offer some good advice in a recent blog post that outlines simple steps you can take to improve understanding for everyone on your worksite. And remember this: Immigrants aren't your only concern. Illiteracy rates are higher in the U.S. than many people realize, so some English-speaking workers may not be able to read safety materials. Read the full article here or browse international bilingual safety signs here.

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