Jottings By An Employer's Lawyer

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

OSHA's New Initiative - Not Your Normal Republican Policy

Even a veteran critic of the weakness of OSHA in general and this administration's enforcement of it in particular, Jordan Barab notes favorably a new task force using existing laws, including those other than OSHA, to go after willful violators of OSHA. See OSHA, Feds Take A Step Toward Real Workplace Penalties. Quoting from the NYT on the new program:

The initiative does not entail new legislation or regulation. Instead, it seeks to marshal a spectrum of existing laws that carry considerably stiffer penalties than those governing workplace safety alone. They include environmental laws, criminal statutes more commonly used in racketeering and white collar crime cases, and even some provisions of the Sarbanes-Oxley act, a corporate reform law.

And although Barab welcomes this action, in his view it is not enough, check out his story for links to new legislation to toughen OSHA penalties and hold employers accountable for workplace deaths being offered by Senators Kennedy and Corzine.

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