Main Article Content
Aims: Explore the perceptions of flower farms workers towards the health effects of chemical exposures. Perception is the views, attitudes and opinions of workers.
Study Design: Descriptive survey, using quantitative and qualitative approaches.
Place and Duration of the Study: Tana Flora, Bahir Dar Farm and Tal Flowers, between November 2018 and June 2019.
Methodology: Statistical analyses were done using 302 sample workers (80 male and 222 female; age ranges 15-65 years) at 95% confidence interval employing stratified random sampling techniques via proportional sample selection, and a response rate of 95.6%. Independent sample t-test with the assumption of equal variance (the Leven’s t-test) was used to analyze the existence of significant perception differences among female and male workers, and workers labour divisions. Qualitative data was obtained through structured interviews from farms managers (3); regional Environmental, Forest and Wildlife Protection Development Authority (EFWPDA) officials (3) and field observations that supplemented the quantitatively analyzed data.
Results: Leven’s t-test showed the computed p-values were less than the preset significance level (0.05) for the majority of health impacts of chemical exposures. Significant perception differences were observed among male and female workers and workers of different labour divisions (production vs. protection; pack house vs. protection) towards health impacts: skin rush, appetite loss, stomach cancer, birth defects, reproductive system damage, dizziness and impaired sight. Males perceived in a better way than females since farms gave special focus to male workers in the protection section 27(8.9%) and they engaged using the required health protective gears. Further, in flower farms, most of the proposed health impact mitigation measures were poorly implemented.
Conclusion: Workers perception differences were occurred due to a particular attention to male workers in protection labour division; hence the regional EFWPDA should do the proper supervision and follow up for effective implementation of health impact mitigation measures.
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