In anti-government politics, “time-out” on regulation versus shortened lives
Seizing upon a reliable “job creation” talking point, conservatives have stoked their war against “big government” by trying to freeze federal actions to protect the public. The “Regulatory Time-Out Act,” which would impose a one-year moratorium on “significant” new regulations, takes aim at regulations that keep industry from dumping poison in rivers or accidentally blowing up factory workers—in other words, policies that capitalists call “job killers.”
Coal mines safer since Upper Big Branch disaster, data shows
Since 29 miners perished in an explosion at the Upper Big Branch Mine in April, 2010, the deadliest mine disaster in 40 years, U.S. coal mines have grown safer, according to government inspection data. Industry and federal officials attribute the improvement to increased enforcement of regulations and better training by mining companies themselves, The Wall Street Journal reports.
Offshore drilling chief to stay on the job
The federal agency that oversees offshore drilling will be dismantled in two weeks, but the former prosecutor who now heads the office isn’t going anywhere — at least not right away. Michael Bromwich will serve as director of the new Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement until a permanent director is selected, the Obama administration confirmed today.
Book: Women in Obama White House felt excluded and ignored
A new book claims that the Obama White House is a boys’ club marred by rampant infighting that has hindered the administration’s economic policy and left top female advisers feeling excluded from key conversations. “This place would be in court for a hostile workplace,” former White House communications director Anita Dunn is quoted as saying. “Because it actually fit all of the classic legal requirements for a genuinely hostile workplace to women.”
Teenage workers lose legs at work, their employer didn’t have workers’ comp insurance
Phyllis Zorn of the Enid (OK) News and Eagle reports that the employer of the two teenage workers who lost legs last month in a grain auger failed to maintain workers’ compensation insurance. Employers in Oklahoma, like employers in most States, are required to maintain workers’ compensation insurance to cover the medical expenses and lost wages of workers injured or made ill by exposures at work. In exchange, workers are not allowed to sue their employers for injuries related to their work.
Union busters use pro-union rule to make money, intensify efforts
Last month, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) issued a rule requiring all employers to put up a poster in their workplaces that informs workers of their right to unionize. The rule was hailed by many as a victory for organized labor. But while some in organized labor praised the rule, the notorious union-busting firm Labor Relations Institute, Inc. began advertising plans on how companies could “effectively counter the NLRB one-sided posting requirements” and was quick to release a kit of similarly styled “counter-posters.”
New survey details workplace safety concerns
Texas leads the nation in construction worker deaths with an average of one worker death about every two-and-a-half days, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. A new survey administered by the Workers Defense Project, an Austin-based low-wage worker’s rights group, shows the problem of workplace safety is present in Austin as well.
Judge rejects motion to seal video, photos in SeaWorld trainer’s death
A federal judge in Orlando has denied a motion filed by the family of Dawn Brancheau, seeking to block the release of video and photos of the SeaWorld trainer’s death.
Pr. George’s dancer sues club
Talayna Clements said she worked hard for her money as a stripper at the Mile High Club in Clinton. But at the end of each shift, managers would deduct a chunk of her tips, and she was routinely stiffed for the hours she worked, Clements alleged in a lawsuit filed in Prince George’s Circuit Court.