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Department of Labor cracks down on roofer for whistleblower violation

Company retaliated against employee who cooperated with OSHA investigation

Posted January 13, 2017

The U.S. Department of Labor filed a lawsuit against a roofing contractor and its owner/chief executive officer for firing the company’s safety manager after he cooperated with an OSHA safety and health inspection.

The lawsuit, filed on December 28, 2016, in U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida, Tampa, alleges the roofing company violated OSHA’s Whistleblower Protection Program when it discriminated against the employee by conducting retaliatory acts. Specifically, the company allegedly violated the OSH Act by terminating the employee for providing documentation to OSHA regarding the company’s safety compliance and attempting to improve the safety culture at the roofing company.

The suit seeks back wages, interest, compensatory and punitive damages, as well as injunctive relief. Additionally, it seeks to have the employee’s personnel records expunged and to bar the roofing company against future violations of the OSH Act.

OSHA enforces the whistleblower provisions of the OSH Act and 21 other statutes, protecting employees who report violations of various securities, financial services, trucking, airline, nuclear power, pipeline, environmental, rail, maritime, health care, food safety, motor vehicle safety, workplace safety and health regulations, and consumer product safety laws.

Employers are prohibited from retaliating against employees who raise various protected concerns or provide protected information to the employer or to the government.

OSHA Compliance for General IndustryJ. J. Keller's OSHA Compliance for General Industry manual is your single source for real-world OSHA compliance guidance.


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