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Pesticide Safety Training Among Farmworker Adolescents from Starr County, Texas

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan

Citation:  Journal of Agricultural Safety and Health. 13(3): 311-321. (doi: 10.13031/2013.23354) @2007
Authors:   E. M. Shipp, S. P. Cooper, D. J. del Junco, J. N. Bolin, R. E. Whitworth, C. J. Cooper
Keywords:   Farmworkers, Hispanic, Migrant, Pesticides, Training, Youth

This study of adolescent farmworkers describes employer compliance with pesticide safety training, a requirement of the EPA-mandated Worker Protection Standard (WPS), and identifies variables associated with having received training within the prior five years. Data are from "A Study of Work Injuries in Farmworker Children," a three-year cohort study of high school students living along the Texas-Mexico border in Starr County. Data were collected using a web-based, self-administered, confidential survey. Of 324 students who participated in field work between January 1 and September 30, 2003, 68 (21.0%) reported ever receiving pesticide safety training. Overall, the 61 (18.8%) students who reported training within the prior five years also reported that their most recent instruction covered at least three key WPS areas (i.e., entry into a recently treated field, pesticide-related injuries/illnesses, and emergency care for pesticide exposure). Based on a multiple logistic regression, students who were male (OR = 1.97), worked only outside of Texas (OR = 2.73), worked only for commercial growers/owners (OR = 4.35), worked only for contractors (OR = 3.18), worked corn crops (OR = 2.93), and worked potato crops (OR = 3.11) were more likely to report receipt of training within the prior five years. Results suggest that increased enforcement may be needed, especially in Texas, and special educational efforts may be needed to reach female farmworker youth.

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