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”.

Login Register Subscribe

Workers fired for raising tuberculosis concerns compensated

Workers fired for raising tuberculosis concerns compensated

The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration is requiring a Connecticut health care facility to compensate three employees fired for raising concerns about tuberculosis exposure.

When Hartford, Connecticut-based Charter Oak Health Center failed to adequately respond to a tuberculosis exposure in December 2011, the three employees tried to highlight the potential dangers, including by cooperating with public and workplace health agencies investigating the incident, OSHA said Monday in a statement.

On Feb. 24, 2012, Charter Oak and its then-CEO Alfreda D. Turner terminated the employees, which an OSHA whistleblower investigation found to be unwarranted because their actions were protected under the Occupational Safety and Health Act.

A consent judgment filed in U.S. District Court in New Haven, Connecticut, last week requires the three employees be paid lost wages of $85,000, $30,000 and $10,000 respectively, less taxes, and be provided with neutral letters of reference.

The health care facility must also notify employees about their whistleblower rights. OSHA is responsible for enforcing the whistleblower protections included in the workplace safety act and 21 other federal statutes.

“It’s critical to workplace safety and health that employee voices not be stifled,” Galen Blanton, OSHA’s New England regional administrator in Boston, said in a statement.

Charter Oak has not admitted to any wrongdoing and continues to believe there were legitimate, non-retaliatory reasons for the terminations of the three individuals, the company said in a press release on Monday.

“As Charter Oak has undergone a period of dramatic positive transformation since the events that occurred in early 2012, including a change in our senior management team, the time was right to the resolve the matter,” the company said in the statement.

“We have dramatically improved our infection control processes since 2012 and have had no further incidents,” the statement continued. “We currently have collaborative relationships with the city of Hartford and the Department of Health and other agencies that serve our patients and all suspected (tuberculosis) exposures are handled in an exemplary manner.”


Read Next