Columbus Workers Comp Attorneys Applaud Alabama Whistleblower

The US Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has filed a lawsuit against an Alabama moving company for firing a worker who refused to enter unsafe working conditions. DKS Structural Services and its owner, Jeff Kennedy, terminated an employee for refusing to enter a 15-foot trench that was not adequately protected against a cave-in.

The terminated employee filed a complaint with OSHA, which then filed the lawsuit. OSHA claims the termination is unlawful under Section 11c of the Occupational Safety and Health Act, which prohibits companies from retaliating against employees who report hazards or refuse to work under dangerous conditions.

“When an employer fails to correct a hazardous condition, workers have the right to refuse to enter an unsafe area without fearing retaliation,” said Cindy Coe, OSHA regional administrator in Atlanta. “Employers violating this basic right will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.”

This worker should have been commended for raising these issues, not punished. It is good that OSHA is taking a stand on this issue—it sends a message that mistreatment of workers will not be tolerated. Please visit our site for more information on high-risk occupations, and contact our firm for a free consultation.

Larrimer & Larrimer, LLC—Columbus Workers Comp Attorneys

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