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employer 59 articles

Dodd-Frank anti-retaliation provisions don’t apply to overseas whistleblowers, U.S. judge rules

Whistleblower provisions written into the 2010 Dodd-Frank Act do not protect overseas workers from retaliation, a New York federal judge has ruled in a case that has been closely monitored by the financial industry and legal experts in the U.S. The case involved a China-based employee Meng-Lin Liu, who filed a whistleblower complaint against his employer Siemens AG in 2011, claiming the company fired him in retaliation for raising concerns internally about fraud and other wrongdoing. Mr. Meng-Lin, a former regional compliance officer for a Chinese subsidiary of Siemens, raised concerns that employees were violating the company’s anti-graft controls as ... Read More

Surgeons perform emergency leg amputation on Washington worker caught in auger

SPOKANE, Wash. – Doctors trying to extricate a 29-year-old mill worker whose leg became caught in an industrial auger on an external catwalk six stories above ground had to perform an on-site amputation in order to free the man. Rescue workers who were called to the scene at a Purina Mill in an industrial section of Spokane, Wash., had to climb several stories to access the man, but could not free his leg from the machine. Grain dust swirling around the equipment complicated rescue efforts, Spokane fire officials told the Spokesman Review. Police picked up orthopedic and vascular surgeons and transported ... Read More

Missouri glass company hit with safety fines after worker’s finger amputation

Federal safety regulators have cited a Missouri glass manufacturer for 21 health and safety violations after a worker lost a finger while repairing a machine at the company’s Park Hills, Missouri facility in March. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) proposed fines of $137,400 for the violations, several of which inspectors deemed serious for the substantial risk of physical injury or death they posed. OSHA investigators said that Piramal Glass USA Inc. had not properly disengaged the machine from its power source while it was undergoing maintenance. “An employer’s failure to power off energy sources before conducting equipment maintenance ... Read More

California grower faces steep fines after worker loses leg on the job

A California grower plans to contest $39,000 in fines proposed by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) for safety violations investigators allege caused a harvester to lose her leg on the job. According to the Modesto Bee, Turlock, Cal.-based Dan Avila & Sons said it will fight the proposed fines before a regional OSHA board early next year despite having a checkered safety history that includes $75,000 for other safety violations and disputes with county officials over some of the land he uses to grow watermelons and sweet potatoes. On Oct. 17, 2012, 32-year-old Anaberta Nunez was working on ... Read More

Contractor fined after roofing workers suffer on-the-job injuries during Alabama thunderstorm

CORDOVA, Ala. – Federal officials have cited an Alabama steel erection and roofing contractor for fall hazards and several other safety violations following the hospitalization of three workers who were injured while performing roof work in Cordova. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) said Russellville-based roofing contractor Marcus Borden failed to provide workers with adequate fall protections while they worked within six feet of an open ledge, as federal safety rules require. OSHA investigators considered the contractor’s lack of proper fall protections to be a willful violation, one that is committed with intentional or voluntary disregard for worker safety ... Read More

Trench collapse in Georgia kills two workers, triggers OSHA investigation

COLUMBUS, Ga. –Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) officials continue to investigate the collapse of a construction trench at an apartment complex that killed two workers last week. James Jackson, 50, and Allen Thomas, 46, died when the walls of a trench they and four other men were working in caved in and buried them under tons of dirt. The men, who were related, worked for Allen Development Group, which is performing excavation work for an expansion project underway at Summit Pointe Apartments in Columbus. The four men who survived the cave-in tried to help the buried men, even using ... Read More

Senate Committee passes bill to extend anti-discrimination protections to LGBT workers

A bipartisan bill that would ban workplace discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity has passed a Senate Committee by a vote of 15 to 7. The Employment Non-Discrimination Act, known as ENDA, received the support of all 12 Democrats and 3 Republicans on the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions. The bill was co-sponsored by Senators Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) and Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.). According to the Huffington Post, the committee spent just 10 minutes discussing the bill before voting it forward. The Committee Chairman, Tom Harkin (D-Iowa), said that the speed at which the bill passed ... Read More

Coal company ordered to withdraw retaliatory lawsuit against whistleblower miner

A federal judge has ordered Armstrong Coal to withdraw its lawsuit against a miner who filed a safety discrimination complaint against the company’s management. The judge’s decision deals a harsh blow to Armstrong Coal’s legal team, which may have overreached in taking its action against the miner, and helps preserve the rights of miners to file safety complaints when they believe their life and the lives of their coworkers are endangered by company policy and poor working conditions. The case stems from Reuben Shemwell, 32, a Kentucky miner who worked as a welder in one of Armstrong’s Western Kentucky coal ... Read More

Maryland parking garage collapse kills one worker, severely injures another

BETHESDA, MD — One construction worker is dead and another severely injured after a “key portion” of a parking garage being built at a Maryland mall collapsed Thursday afternoon. An investigation of the collapse is underway. According to a news release from the Westfield Montgomery Mall in Bethesda, a new 16-screen movie theater was being built on top of the parking garage when the structure collapsed. There were about 20 construction workers on the site at the time of the collapse. Montgomery County fire officials reported that around 1:47 p.m. a beam weighing 25 tons fell from the third floor ... Read More

Salon industry workers often exposed to toxic levels of formaldehyde

Formaldehyde, a highly volatile and toxic compound that poses a substantial threat to human health, is commonly found in and released by certain hair-smoothing products used by salons. But despite the known dangers and the federal laws designed to protect salon workers from the dangers of formaldehyde, regulators are finding salon workers are regularly exposed to the substance. “We want to make sure that salon owners are aware that if they use these products, they have to implement protective measures such as air monitoring and training,” said Dr. David Michaels, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) Assistant Secretary of ... Read More