A study released Thursday examining the availability of personal protective equipment in workplaces found that 72% of workers who forgo protocol do so because they “just didn’t want to wear it.”
The JJ Keller Center for Market Insights, the research arm of security materials supplier JJ Keller and Associates Inc., surveyed 172 people from more than 10 industries, with transportation, manufacturing and construction making up 70% of respondents. The study examined such gear as vests, helmets and goggles.
The survey found that 50% of companies said their employees did not think the protective equipment was necessary, another 50% said the equipment “makes the job more difficult”; and 21% said workers were forgoing protective equipment because they “didn’t know it was required,” according to findings which allowed respondents to provide more than one answer.
The survey also found the top three barriers to providing equipment. The first issue is size, as 55% of workers needed larger sizes while 41% said they needed a smaller size, and 35% of companies said they had difficulty finding equipment for female workers.
Heat was another challenge, as the issue was raised several times in the open-ended portion of the survey, with respondents bemoaning workers protesting that hot weather made it difficult to wear helmets and other wearable clothing.
Supply chain disruptions were listed as the third barrier to ensuring workers are protected, as 71% of respondents said they sometimes or often had problems securing PPE.