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Psychological claims to WCB up in 2023 according to the latest report from the city

Winnipeg city hall
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New numbers from an annual report on workplace safety among city employees show psychological claims made to the Workers Compensation Board (WCB) are up compared to the previous year.

The city's public service creates the report every year looking at WCB stats as well as lost time injury (LTI) rates.

In 2023, there were 182 claims made to WCB that were considered psychological, which was up 31 per cent from the 139 claims in 2022.

"Psychological claims to the WCB can occur based on a number of factors, including exposure to violence, mental stress, burnout, and other critical incidents in the workplace," the report reads.

Despite there being more psychological cases in 2023, stats showed psychological claims made up 34 per cent of all-time lost WCB claims, which was the same amount in 2022.

When looking at physical injuries, cases were slightly down in 2023 with 1,246, compared to 1,254 in 2022.

However, the LTI frequency – which is lost time injuries per 100 workers per year – was up to 11 in 2023, up from 10.2 in 2022.

A further breakdown of the numbers shows employees with the Winnipeg Fire Paramedic Service had the highest LTI frequency at around 26, followed by transit employees at around 17.

Planning property and development, and fleet management agency employees had the lowest LTI frequency at around two and three respectively.

One of the main reasons people missed time from work was sprains and strains, which made up 58 per cent of LTIs. The report lists several reasons for missing time, which range from contusions and lacerations to amputations and gunshot wounds.

The report notes that WCB-related costs were $19.4 million for 2023, up from $16.4 million in 2022. But around half of those costs were from claims in the previous year.

Also of note, $2.1 million of that total cost was for rehabilitation positions, which means employees doing light duties as they start their return to work.

The report said the City of Winnipeg also became fully certified in the SAFE Work program, making it the largest organization in Manitoba to have this certification.

"Certification through the SAFE Work program helps organizations reduce workplace injuries and illnesses as well as promote a culture of safety."

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