Founded by the Workers’ Action Centre and Health Providers Against Poverty in 2014, the Decent Work and Health Network (DWHN) is a group of health workers and trainees advocating for better health by addressing working and employment conditions in Ontario.
What we do
Being effective in our work as health providers requires us to examine how social inequities have an impact on the health of our patients. Guided by the principles of the social determinants of health (SDOH), we address issues such as working conditions and income inequality at the individual, community and policy levels.
On the individual and community levels, we have developed presentations and training materials to better equip health workers to intervene on precarious work in a clinical setting. We have also developed a strong media presence to promote public awareness on the impact of precarious work on health. The DWHN also identifies opportunities to advocate for progressive policy change. As a member of the $15 and Fairness campaign, the DWHN has been an active participant in consultations and organizing around the Changing Workplaces Review, which was commissioned by the government to study working and employment conditions in the province from 2015-2017. Recent activities include preparing a submission and presenting on the health aspects of the Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act, 2017 (Bill 148) at hearings of the Standing Committee on Finance and Economic Affairs, in July 2017. You can view our submission here.
We are currently building a provincial network of health providers interested in supporting individual and public health by going upstream to address the social determinants of health. This effort includes working with all levels of government and within our own health care sector to foster decent work that translates to better health.