Wednesday, February 26, 2014

MSHA Monthly Inspections: Helping Ensure the Safety of Every American Miner

To cap a rather good campaign in 2013, the US Department of Labor’s Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) has released the latest report about their impact inspections for the last month of the year. 

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MSHA’s Monthly Inspections: What’s In It?

This monthly inspection began in April 2010 after an explosion happened at the Upper Big Branch Mine. These accidents involve mines that are quite notorious for their poor compliance with the MSHA’s requirements. Through these inspections, the MSHA are able to detect various violations and thus recommend a course of action to the Labor Department to be able to eliminate these hazards. This in turn helps ensure the safety of the miners in the workplace.

MSHA’s December 2013 Inspection Results

Conducted on December 11, 2013, the MSHA made an impact inspection while in the day shift of Hanover Resources LLC’s Caymus Mine in Boone County West Virginia. According to their inspection, the MSHA has noticed seven “unwarrantable failure orders”, as well as six 104 (a) citations in the first-ever impact inspection at the mine.

Also, the MHSA has conducted another impact inspection this time it was held at the Veris Gold U.S.A. Inc’s Jerritt Canyon Mill in Elko County, Nevada. The Mill received 61 citations that included unsafe working habits for employees that have endangered their lives.

Need for Continuous Inspections

As a way to protect their employees while in the workplace, a mining operator should adhere to the MSHA directed safety guidelines to help ensure the health and well-being of their talents. Meeting these criteria also makes it easier and safer for employees to perform their jobs promoting workplace safety and the avoidance of accidents. With the tremendous, overwhelming amounts of danger that one may encounter while in a mining site, employees need these companies to adhere to the MHSA’s guidelines. This way the occurrence of accidents in the workplace can be minimized and workers would not end up getting hurt or killed.

In cases where one person gets hurt because of these violations an employee can sue their employer by seeking the help of a Los Angeles employment attorney and filing the right employment charges against them. That is why as workers, you should be made aware of what your rights are so you can protect yourself from abuse and get the things that you truly deserve, like fair treatment and pay, as well as a good working conditions conducive for productivity and success.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

OSC and EEOC Work Together to Enforce EEO Laws for Feds

Can’t one agency alone get the job done of enforcing laws? Apparently not, cause this is more of synergy than incompetence. In their aim to help effectively implement equal employment opportunity (EEO) laws in the federal sector, two US agencies have renewed their pact of working together to achieve a great goal.

EEOC and OSC: Together for Fed Workers

While there have been many EEO laws that have been implemented over the years, one can’t deny that there are still inequalities in the federal workplace. Some people still fall victims to harassment, and discrimination, keeping the good employees ineffective in doing their jobs, and the undeserving people getting credit for the job done.

The EEOC’s main function is to enforce the federal laws to prevent employment discrimination. On the other hand, the OSC is tasked to protect the federal employees as well as others from “prohibited personnel practices” like discrimination, coercion of the person’s political activity, deception and obstruction of an employee to compete for employment, nepotism, reprising against whistleblowing, threatening to take a personnel action as a form of retaliation, among others. There is a great similarity in the function of the two agencies; and so synergizing their efforts in properly implementing EEO laws in the federal workplace would be very ideal. This prompted the US Office of Special Counsel (OSC) and the US Equal employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) to come up with a new Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that commits to enhancing efficiency and the enforcement of federal sector EEO laws.

In a simple ceremony, EEOC’s chair Jacqueline Berrien and OSC’s head Carolyn Lerner signed the MOU between the two agencies. This MOU that supersedes all of the prior ones signed, includes – but is not limited to – the following points:

•    The EEOC will be referring to the OSC when it comes to potential enforcement action cases where the former finds that an agency, an officer, or its employee has made any acts of discrimination against any of the employees or applicants for employment

•    Likewise, the EEOC will refer to the OSC for potential enforcement action cases where a federal agency fails in complying with an EEOC order, as well as any other case or matter that need warrants enforcement by the OSC, as determined by the EEOC.

•    Should the EEOC determine that the employing agency failed to, or will not at all take the appropriate action, the OSC may intervene to investigate such matters up to a point needed so that it can determine the sufficiency of the basis for coming up with such disciplinary action.

While developments like these make things easier for federal employees to protect their rights and stand up against discrimination, the importance of the views of a good California employment lawyer cannot be discounted. They say two heads are better than one. Now imagine having a lawyer further boosting your chances of winning your claims? Yes, two agencies working together are indeed more effective than one. And with the little help from a competent attorney, the possibility of winning that case against abusive federal agencies is almost within reach.