Young Workers - It's Your Responsibility

Even before you start your first job, you should start thinking about safety. At your job interview, keep an eye out for signs that the employer takes safety seriously. Here are some steps that you can take:

RAC - Recognize - Assess - Control

Recognize (or 'First Impressions Count')

At the interview (or when you bring in your resume), take a look around the workplace and make some mental notes. Afterwards, write down what you saw and what the employer said and didn't say (for example: make a note if they did not mention training or safety rules).

Did the employer mention any equipment or machines that you might be working with?

  • If so, will you be trained how to use it safely?
  • Did you see warning signs posted in hazardous areas?
  • Are there safety posters on the walls?
  • Did you notice a bulletin board for safety messages?
  • Are the employees wearing protective equipment (e.g. safety glasses, safety shoes, gloves, hard hat)?

Assess (or Sit and Think)

  • Take time to think about this job and the workplace. Evaluate the information.
  • Talk to your parents or someone you trust (preferably someone older) about what you saw.
  • Gather information from the library or the Internet. Are there any hazards common to that type of workplace? What are they?
  • Decide if you have enough information about the workplace or if you need to ask the employer for more information.

Control (or Take Action)

If your employer calls to tell you that you have the job, but you're still not sure if it is a safe place to work, you can take some control! Ask the employer if there will be health and safety training. Tell the employer your concern about using equipment without proper training. Before you accept the job, confirm that they will offer the proper training. Find out the answers to any concerns in your assessment.