“Stronger enforcement tools, tougher penalties and broader workers’ rights are at the center of soon-to-be introduced workplace safety legislation,” blogs the AFL-CIO.
“The bill’s crafters say they were spurred by the deadly Massey Energy Upper Big Branch explosion that killed 29 coal miners; the Tesoro refinery blast that claimed the lives of seven Washington State workers; the BP oil rig blast that killed 11, the Connecticut Kleen Energy Systems explosion where six workers died and other recent workplace disasters,” according to the AFL-CIO.
The outline of the proposed job safety bill focuses on mine safety, but also includes provisions to strengthen worker safety protections in all workplaces. House and Senate leaders, including Rep. George Miller (D-Calif.), announced the new job safety package on June 30th.
“Some of the country’s workplace fatalities receive national attention â€” like the explosions at the Tesoro refinery in Washington or Upper Big Branch mine in West Virginia â€” but the vast majority get little attention beyond the affected family and friends,” according to the AFL-CIO. “Workers everywhere and in every industry deserve to be able to feel confident that while they are working hard and doing their jobs, their employers are doing everything possible to keep them safe.”