Occupational segregation as a determinant of US worker health

Katherine Chung-Bridges, Carles Muntaner, Lora E. Fleming, David J. Lee, Kristopher L. Arheart, William G. LeBlanc, Sharon L. Christ, Kathryn E. McCollister, Alberto J. Caban, Evelyn P. Davila

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Racial segregation provides apotential mechanism to link occupations with adverse health outcomes. Methods: An African-American segregation index (IAA) was calculated for US worker groups from the nationally representative pooled 1986-1994 National Health Interview Survey (n = 451,897). Ranking and logistic regression analyses were utilized to document associations between IAA and poor worker health. Results: There were consistent positive associations between employment in segregated occupations and poor worker health, regardless of covariate adjustment or stratification (e.g., age, gender, income, education, or geographic region). This association between segregation and poor health was stronger for White as compared to African-American workers. Conclusions: Occupational segregation negatively affects all workers. Potential mechanisms need to be identified through which occupational segregation may adversely impact worker health.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)555-567
Number of pages13
JournalAmerican Journal of Industrial Medicine
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2008 Aug


  • African-American workers
  • Health disparities
  • Occupational segregation
  • Worker health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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