BAGUIO CITY – The Cordillera office of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE_CAR) commended the members of the local legislative body for looking into the welfare of the workers in the city by considering a proposed ordinance authored by Councilor Leandro B. Yangot, Jr. requiring all department stores, bazaars and other stores to provide stools, chairs or similar adequate facilities to be used by their sales personnel when not actually attending to customers.
DOLE-CAR Exequiel Ronnie Guzman, in a letter to Councilor Yangot, said that his proposed ordinance will definitely protect the workers from the effect of long standing on their health.
“We would like to recommend that the ordinance will state specifically that workers be given at least 10 minutes sitting break every after an hour of standing if this is the intent of the proposed ordinance,” Guzman stressed.
Based on a cross sectional study of the relationship of prolonged standing and musculoskeletal symptoms among sales personnel conducted by the Ateneo de Manila University, it was found out that majority of sales personnel experienced prolonged standing, comprising 70 percent of the sample size and the prevalence of musculoskeletal symptoms was 86 percent among all the respondents.
Further, the study noted that the top 5 body parts with musculoskeletal symptoms within the last 12 months were upper back 52 percent, shoulder – 50 percent, lower back – 44 percent, ankle or feet – 43 percent and neck – 41 percent.
According to the study, prolonged standing was significantly associated with upper back and ankle or feet musculoskeletal symptoms and it was also associated with multiple body parts and axial load-bearing body parts with musculoskeletal symptoms.
For upper back, the study stated possible confounders were body mass index, gender, and flat-footedness and for ankles and feet, the possible confounder was educational attainment.
For multiple body parts with symptoms, the study noted possible confounders were smoking status, body mass index, job title, gender, duration and current nature of work, and flat-footedness and lastly, axial load-bearing body parts, the possible confounders were smoking status, body mass index, job title, gender, duration and current nature of work and educational attainment.
The study concluded prolonged standing was significantly associated with musculoskeletal symptoms and other factors were also identified as risk factors and associated with the manifestation of symptoms in various body parts.
The study was aimed at determining the prevalence of musculoskeletal symptoms and to examine the relationship between exposure to prolonged standing and the reported symptoms of sales personnel in the country.
Yangot expressed his gratitude to the DOLE-CAR for providing the local legislative body with the necessary inputs that would fastrack the passage of the ordinance for the benefit of workers in various establishments around the city.
By Dexter A. See