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CSE Director, Peter Schnall to receive Jean Spencer Felton Award

Each year at the Western Occupational Health Conference (WOHC) a physician is honored for excellence in scientific writing. The award is presented to a member of the Western Occupational and Environmental Medical Association (WOEMA) who has contributed significantly to furthering the body of knowledge in the field of occupational and environmental medicine. 

Dr. Schnall is being presented with the award at the InterContinental Hotel in San Francisco, California on Friday, September 14, 2012 at 2:00 pm, during the WOEMA Annual Business Meeting.

For further information please visit the WOEMA website at: http://www.woema.org/awardjs.vp.html

Robots to Play Crucial Role in Foxconn Future Expansion

With pressure to produce still more coming from Apple and other end users and the company complaining of low profit margins, Foxconn has now sought to increase its production processes by means of robotics. According to Terry Gou, the company’s founder and chairman, Foxconn already makes use of some 10,000 robots and sees many benefits in expanding its use of robots. Gou plans to use the new robots to perform tasks such as spraying, welding and assembling. He projects that utilizing up to 1 million robots will improve the working conditions at his plant for Foxconn workers by eliminating those parts of the production process which are repetitive and menial, effectively elevating it’s workforce into positions with increased skill-level and value.

But will the modernization of Foxconn’s plants into a futuristic, automated factory actually mean better working conditions for China’s workers, or just a loss of jobs? Gou’s argument seems to favor the hypothesis of Skill Biased Technological Change (SBTC), which purports to positively favor a shift from an un-skilled labor force to skilled workers. SBTC has, however, become the center of debate on the unequal distribution of power in the workplace (management vs. workers) and the increasing inequality of wealth between social classes in Capitalist societies.

21 Workplace Benefits that are Rapidly Disappearing

Emily Brandon, On Friday July 22, 2011, 11:42 am EDT

Traditional pension plans, paid family leave, and even the company picnic are all on the decline. Employers have significantly cut many of the benefits they offer to workers over the past five years. Some 77 percent of companies report that benefits offerings have been negatively affected by the slow pace of recovery, according to a Society for Human Resource Management survey of 600 human resources professionals. “The two biggest areas where cuts have come have been in health care and retirement because that’s where costs have increased the most,” says Mark Schmit, research director of the Society for Human Resource Management in Alexandria, Va. Here is a look at the workplace perks that have significantly declined since 2007.

Eating less salt doesn’t cut heart risks: study I Reuters

Is nothing sacred? For 100 years now it has been gospel that salt plays an important role in the etiology of ESSENTIAL Hypertension, despite the fact that the evidence for the role of salt has always been contradictory (e.g., feeding people unlimited amounts of salt doesn’t increase bp as our bodies have enormous ability to excrete salt in the urine). This article provides further evidence that the role in sodium in the etiology and treatment of hypertension is even more problematic than previously thought.  The key sentence from below of their results  “participants with the lowest salt intake had the highest rate of death from heart disease during the follow up (4 percent), and people who ate the most salt had the lowest (less than 1 percent).”

Enjoy,
Dr. Peter Schnall

New Work and Family Researchers Network

We wanted to be sure that you have heard about the new Work and Family Researchers Network (WFRN), formerly the Sloan Work and Family Research Network.  As you may know, the Sloan Network has been the premier online destination for work and family information for the past 14 years. In November 2010, we received a final grant from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation to create this new organization.

To learn more and stay updated, please visit our interim website at: http://workfamily.sas.upenn.edu/index.html

ISEQH 6th International Conference: Making Policy a Health Equity Building Process

ISEQH 6th International Conference: Making Policy a Health Equity Building Process

September 26 – September 28, 2011

Catagena de Indias, Colombia

APA/NIOSH 9th International Conference

Work, Stress, and Health 2011: Work and Well-Being in an Economic Context

May 19 – 22, 2011

DoubleTree Hotel in Orlando, Florida

20th International Symposium on Shiftwork and Working Time

Biological mechanisms and risk management in the 24h society

June 28 – July 1, 2011

Stockholm, Sweden.

Third Forum of the Americas on Psychosocial Factors

“Stress and Mental Health at Work”

October 14 – 16, 2010

Mexico City, Mexico

ICOH – WOPS Conference

“The Changing World of Work”

Driven by technological innovations, globalisation and demographic changes, the world of work is changing.

June 14 – 17, 2010

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