BI’s Article search uses Boolean search capabilities. If you are not familiar with these principles, here are some quick tips.
To search specifically for more than one word, put the search term in quotation marks. For example, “workers compensation”. This will limit your search to that combination of words.
To search for a combination of terms, use quotations and the & symbol. For example, “hurricane” & “loss”.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has ordered a Missouri company to rehire a wrongfully terminated employee and pay him more than $332,000 in back wages and damages.
Sedalia, Missouri-based transportation company RCL Wiring L.P., which operates as Idaho & Sedalia Transportation Co., harassed and terminated a signal shop technician in retaliation for reporting a work-related injury in violation of the Federal Railroad Safety Act, according to investigators for OSHA and the Department of Labor. OSHA enforces the whistleblower provisions of the Federal Railroad Safety Act and 21 other statutes protecting employees who report violations.
The investigators determined the company disciplined the 5-year employee after he reported injuries sustained in February 2014, according to a news release issued by OSHA on Wednesday. After the technician asked the company for reimbursement of medical co-payments, Idaho & Sedalia required him to submit a second injury report, threatened to discipline him for filing it late and then terminated him in June 2014 for allegedly making harassing and threatening statements, according to the agency.
OSHA ordered the company to reinstate the technician and pay him $154,749 in back wages, plus interest minus applicable employment deductions, as well as $177,720 in punitive and compensatory damages and reasonable attorney’s fees, according to OSHA. The company must also remove disciplinary information from the employee’s personnel record and provide information about whistleblower rights to its employees. Prior to this incident, the employee had never been disciplined, according to the agency.
“It is disheartening that this employee was ultimately terminated because he exercised his rights and reported a work-related injury,” Marcia Drumm, OSHA’s regional administrator in Kansas City, Missouri, said in a statement. “Even more egregious is that, without a thorough investigation, the company accused a loyal employee of making harassing and threatening statements to other workers. Whistleblower protections play an important role in keeping workplaces safe. It is illegal to discipline an employee for reporting an injury and seeking medical attention and it puts everyone at risk.”
A company spokesperson could not be immediately reached for comment.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited and proposed more than $178,000 in fines against a Michigan painting company after a worker fell and suffered severe injuries in June.