230343 New York taxi drivers: Identification of risk factors for workplace violence using Community Based Participatory Action Research (CBPAR)

Tuesday, November 9, 2010 : 5:15 PM - 5:30 PM

Rebecca L. Reindel, MFS, MPH , Department of Environmental & Occupational Health, School of Public Health & Health Services, George Washington University, Washington, DC
David F. Goldsmith, MSPH, PhD , Department of Environmental & Occupational Health, School of Public Health & Health Services, George Washington University, Washington, DC
Pyser Edelsack, MSW , Sophie Davis School of Biomedical Education, City University of New York Medical School, New York, NY
Objectives: The New York Taxi Workers Alliance (NYTWA) represents 40,000 taxi drivers responsible for transporting passengers in the largest city of the United States. Driving a taxi is one of the most dangerous professions for both worker injuries and fatalities from acts of violence. Under the auspices of the NYTWA, this research identifies risk factors for violence against this working population and examines current citywide policies for violence prevention. Methods: Risk factors were identified through a self-reported questionnaire and analyzed using the Statistical Analysis Software (SAS). Violence indicators were analyzed against self-perceived safety and stress, vehicle design, job characteristics and demographic data. The interviewer-administered survey was developed utilizing input from NYTWA drivers, field experts and previous NYTWA collaborators. Surveys were conducted on a convenience sample of drivers approached at airport waiting lots, shift changes at gas stations and the NYTWA office. Results: 206 drivers were interviewed over a 9-day period. Drivers' mean age is 43 years; they represent fifty countries of origin and 66% hold at least a college education. On average, workers drive 67 hours per week for 8 years. Violence data indicated 31.5% of drivers have been robbed, 40.5% assaulted, 87.2% yelled at, 60.1% called racial slurs and 95% lost fares because passengers left the vehicle without paying. Conclusions: Taxi driving remains a profession at great risk of workplace violence with little recognition by the public. Citywide policies must better reflect driver safety.

Learning Areas:
Diversity and culture
Occupational health and safety
Public health or related public policy
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
1- Describe job and personal characteristics specific to taxi drivers in New York City. 2- Identify risk factors associated with self-reported violence indicators in this sampled population. 3- Compare workplace violence rates and attributes between taxi driving and other professions.

Keywords: Occupational Safety, Community Research

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I conducted the field research to collect this data and this analysis is the content for my Master's thesis.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.