Safety

Category archives for Safety

Community groups, labor applaud new California refinery safety protections

Environmental justice and labor groups in California were relentless in their demand to make refineries safer. Their years of effort paid off with an announcement last week by the state of new refinery safety regulations.

A historical look at the ‘radium girls’ and their legacy of worker justice; OSHA’s website for receiving injury and illness logs not accepting submissions; California farmworkers sickened by pesticide after Trump’s EPA reverses course on a probable ban; and former Walmart employees file class-action lawsuit for pregnancy discrimination.

Accounting professors have confirmed what we always suspected: companies which are scrambling to meet or just beat Wall Street analysts’ profit projections have worker injury rates that are 12% higher than other employers.  The recent research indicates that frantic efforts by “benchmark-beating” employers – increasing employees’ workloads or pressuring them to work faster, at the same time that these employers cut safety spending on activities like maintaining equipment or training employees, to meet the profit projections – are the likely source of increased injuries and illnesses.

Nation’s largest wireless infrastructure provider linked to two worker deaths in eight days

In an eight-day period, two workers lost their lives at communication towers. Their deaths reminded me of the grave hazards in the industry and the subcontracting model that can shield firms from responsibility for the hazards they create.

Investigation reveals how Case Farms poultry plants exploit immigrant workers; Chinese workers who make Ivanka Trump’s clothing line are overworked and underpaid; California lawmakers consider bill to protect salon workers from harmful chemicals; and Trump’s budget would slash funds for combating child and forced labor overseas.

Occupational Health News Roundup

Immigrant workers who get injured at work now fearful about accessing workers’ comp; women ironworkers win six months of paid maternity leave; many home health workers still going without health insurance coverage; and a health care union declares itself a sanctuary for immigrants.

More “severe violators” designated by OSHA

OSHA’s list of bad actors has two new members. An update of the agency’s “severe violators” program shows two companies were added since President Trump took office.

To get a clearer sense of just how bad our drug overdose problem has gotten, look no further than this year’s County Health Rankings. The annual report found that after years of declining premature deaths, that rate is on the rise and due primarily to overdose deaths. It means we could be seeing the first generation of American kids with shorter life expectancies than their parents.

Occupational Health News Roundup

Federal contractors receive billions in public funds despite wage violations; Alabama’s auto industry putting workers’ lives in danger; OSHA delays life-saving silica standard; and Maryland and Nevada legislators approve paid sick leave measures.

As a PhD student, Laura Syron was helping her advisor with workplace safety research focused on the Pacific Northwest commercial fishing industry. The project got her thinking about worker safety throughout the seafood supply chain, from the boat to the processing plant. So she decided to do a study of her own.