Monday, January 21, 2008

Is Work Making You Sick?

So I’m watching the NFL playoffs with my wife yesterday, steaming bowls of Grampa’s homemade chili and hunks of cornbread sitting in front of us, when an ad comes on for

In it, dawn is approaching. Anonymous suburbanites, sluggish and unshaven, disheveled and distraught, take up whatever weapons are at hand (satellite dishes, for example) to wage battle against an unseen foe. It seems to be a horrible, fiendish creature and the battle promises to be epic.

The hideous foe? The sunrise. And what does it bring? Monday morning.

The tag line for the employment Web site is, “Don’t fight Monday,” implying that it can help you find a job you’ll like so much that you won’t dread going to work.

But what if there were good reasons not to go to work? What if work was making us sick, instead of simply making us sick of work? The good folks at were kind enough to give us some proof that our jobs can, in fact, make us ill.

The story suggests that everywhere you look, cold and flu germs are lurking, waiting for the chance to infect you.

Your computer keyboard? A haven for germs. Your telephone? Might as well call the doctor right now. It even suggests that you use a knuckle on certain frequently touched surfaces such as the “copy” button on a photocopier or the buttons on an elevator.

As is so often the case when the conversation steers to germs, the best defense is hand washing. The expert quoted in the CNN story also suggests wiping down your desk and work surfaces with disinfectant to kill the germs before they get you.

However, if that important report is past due or your boss insists on moving up a project deadline, maybe a little cold and flu isn’t that bad.

--Scott Samples
Public Information Coordinator

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