Thou shall not steal: Houston’s wage theft ordinance in action

Workers in Houston test the City’s new anti-wage theft ordinance, making a complaint against companies contracted by the City of Houston.

Pulitzer Prizes and public health

The list of Pulitzer Prize winners released earlier this week includes several journalists who addressed public-health issues, from black lung to food stamps.

Don’t be fooled by the safety talk

Two recent incidents reminded me of what a worker said about “safety talks.”

The Washington Post provides in-depth coverage on issues facing veterans who served in Iraq and Afghanistan; an unprecedented release of Medicare data gives reporters a lot to work with; and journalists consider how West Virginia’s reliance on a few industries has influenced the state’s response to contaminated water and drug addiction.

Unfortunately, it’s not too terribly surprising that diseases of the developing world don’t attract as much research attention as diseases common in wealthier countries. However, a new study not only underscores that trend, it actually found zero relationship between global disease burden and health research.

CDC agency chastises USDA for mischaracterizing a report on poultry workers

NIOSH is one of those federal agencies that prefers to lie quietly in the background. But when USDA misconstrued a NIOSH report on poultry worker injuries, the agency took notice and created some waves.

The World Health Organization has released a new estimate of the number of premature deaths linked to air pollution: In 2012, approximately seven million deaths — one in eight of those occurring worldwide — resulted from exposure to air pollution. The vast majority of these deaths occurred in low- and middle-income countries, with much of the burden falling in South East Asia and the Western Pacific.

Pictures say a thousand words: OSHA Silica Hearings week #3

OSHA’s public hearing on its proposed regulation on respirable crystalline silica concluded last week. Some of the final witnesses included the American Petroleum Institute and the Laborers’ Health and Safety Fund.

Occupational Health News Roundup

President Obama highlights the ways inadequate paid-leave and wage policies affect women workers; a California bill would hold companies liable for violations by the temporary labor firms they contract with; and OSHA proposes $2.3 million in fines against a company that exposed workers to asbestos and lead hazards.

When Brian Castrucci sees signs up at local retailers offering discounts to police officers and firefighters, he thinks: Why not public health too?