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OSHA revises three whistleblower statutes

September 20, 2012
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whistleblowerOSHA has established a new internal directive for responding to appeals from workers who have filed complaints under three of the 22 whistleblower statutes enforced by OSHA.

OSHA's Whistleblower Protection Program (OWPP) enforces the whistleblower provisions of these 22 statutes, which protect workers who report violations of various workplace regulations. All of these statutes provide for an avenue of appeal, with the exception of three laws: Section 11(c) of the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (Section 11(c)), the Asbestos Hazard Emergency Response Act (AHERA), and the International Safe Container Act (ISCA). Although such appeals are not specifically provided for by statute or regulation, it has been OSHA's long-standing policy and procedure to provide complainants with the right to appeal determinations under Section 11(c), AHERA, and ISCA.

The new directive (PDF*) establishes a revised national program for processing these appeals, which grants 11(c), AHERA, and ISCA complainants 15 calendar days from receipt of the dismissal letter to appeal the decision with OWPP. The instruction also establishes an Appeals Committee to examine any cases that merit further review. For additional information, read the directive in full, or visit OSHA's updated Whistleblower Protection page.

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