Employer Fined For Retaliation Against An Injured Worker
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recently ordered an Employer fined for retaliation against an injured worker. OSHA ordered Metro-North Commuter Railroad Co. to pay $250,000 in punitive damages and $10,000 in compensatory damages as a result of their violation of the Federal Railroad Safety Act. See http://www.dol.gov/opa/media/press/osha/OSHA20142176.htm In this case, the employee sustained a work related knee injury. While driving the employee to the hospital a supervisor told the injured worker that employees who are hurt on the job are written up for safety violations and are not considered for advancement and promotions within the company. Co-workers reported similar treatment. Shortly after reporting the work related injury, the injured worker was disciplined. The injured worker filed a complaint under the Federal Railroad Safety Act for discrimination. OSHA found that the injured worker engaged in protected activity when he reported his injury and filed his complaints with OSHA, that Metro-North knew these were protected activities and that these protected activities were contributing factors in Metro-North’s subsequent disciplining of the employee.
Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing safe and healthful workplaces for their employees. OSHA’s role is to ensure these conditions for America’s working men and women by setting and enforcing standards, and providing training, education and assistance. For more information, visit http://www.osha.gov. If you would an evaluation of your wrongful termination case of your Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation case contact our office for a consultation and evaluation.