The job of the PSW is not so easy it requires the best service and care in less time and also at a low wage. Working as a PSW can be difficult and dangerous if the workplace is not good and safe. A role of a PSW is to provide an adequate care to the client and also to help the clients with the day to day activities. But sometimes this role is not completed by the PSW’S due to the bad workplace conditions, understaffing, workplace violence and many more issues contributing to the incompletion of the role of the PSW.
According to my study there are many issue which are prevalent in the long-term care and community related to the role of PSW but the issue which I am going to talk about is ‘Bad workplace environment’ and due to which many other issues arises. Bad workplace environment can be harmful to the PSW as well as the client. In the field of PSW bad workplace has been a common factor and which also sometimes add up to the violence against the PSW. Even while reading an article, I read about the incident of the PSW that how she was assaulted by her client’s husband while she was putting her client to bed. And most of the times this types of assaults and violence goes unreported. “Workers tell that they don’t report these types of incident as they are never addressed properly and also, they don’t have time to complete the paperwork”. CITATION Alb08 l 1033 (Albert Banerjee, 2008) . Though there are some limitations in the research, it is stated by experts that PSW’S face high rate of Violence and also this is a result of understaffing in the Long-term facilities and group homes and in the article, there are instances which the PSW tells by themselves that they most likely face abuse at a workplace if the long-term care or the group home is understaffed. Adding to the instances the PSW says ,”If they are run off their feet and they don’t have enough time to provide care….then you get higher incidences of hitting, punching, and scratching directed towards workers,” she said, a conclusion based on her research that correlated staffing levels to violence against workers”. CITATION Vjo17 l 1033 (Isai, 2017). Bad workplace environment also contributes to the understaffing as no one wants to work in an environment which is not good and full of stress or in which they experience violence and still get paid less after doing a lot of work. Sometimes in a long term care a PSW might not want to work as the area is too tight for them to work because of which they are not able to do their responsibilities properly. Example: In one case, she noticed injuries on a female resident and asked her about it. The woman told her she’d been thrown onto the bed, punched in the shoulder, her call bell disabled so she couldn’t call for more assistance. CITATION Kim17 l 1033 (Zarzour, 2017)Also, Sometimes the management don’t provide them the proper staff and proper equipment as they want to save the cost and because of that it gets too stressful for the PSW to do his/her job properly , as being understaff they are not able to look after each client assigned to them and also due to the lack of equipment they are not able to do their role and they leave it without doing it which leads to a stressful workplace. Example: A PSW wants to wipe their clients but due to the lack of the equipment and help needed they are not able to lift their client either they leave the client unattended or they try it to by themselves and they injure the client which can also put them in a legal position. A client’s house can also be even more worse workplace as the PSW knows nothing about the client home and on the other hand they can be sometimes assaulted by the client or client’s family.
Poor working conditions can impede one’s ability to perform tasks effectively and potentially result in psychological challenges or physical injury when not addressed. As PSWs are responsible for ensuring the safety of those they care for, it is crucial that workplace conditions are conducive to them meeting that objective. Giving more self-governance and assets to PSW’S would be another genuine change that would include acknowledgment of the abilities associated with this exceedingly gendered mind work.
1. Albert Banerjee, T. D. (2008, Februray 23). longswood. Retrieved from www.longswood.com: https://www.longwoods.com/articles/images/Violence_LTC_022408_Final.pdf
2. Isai, V. (2017, November 26). TheStar. Retrieved from thestar: https://www.thestar.com/news/gta/2017/09/22/workplace-violence-plagues-personal-support-workers.html
3. Zarzour, K. (2017, August 10). yorkregion. Retrieved from www.yorkregion.com: https://www.yorkregion.com/news-story/7487783-caregiver-crisis-one-personal-support-worker-s-story/