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Showing blog posts tagged with Worker Safety and Health

Fallen Firefighters Honored

IAFF photo

More than 5,000 people honored the lives of 157 firefighters and paramedics who died in the line of duty during the past year at the 27th annual Fallen Fire Fighter Memorial service in Colorado Springs on Sept. 21. As each fallen firefighter’s name was called, a bell was rung and family members were presented with ceremonial folded flags.

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Experts: Bangladesh Accord Is a Game Changer

Solidarity Center photo

In a dramatic demonstration of how deadly the global supply chain really is, Scott Nova, director of the Worker Rights Consortium (WRC), opened a panel on workers' rights in Bangladesh during the recent AFL-CIO Convention with this observation:

Of the four deadliest factory disasters in history, three of those four happened in the last 12 months.

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Walmart to Make Safety Changes After OSHA Inspections Find Violations

Photo courtesy Ron Dauphin

Retail giant Walmart reached an agreement with the Labor Department to make improvements at nearly 4,700 Walmart and Sam's Club locations after an Occupational Safety and Health Administration inspection at a Rochester, N.Y., store in 2011 found numerous safety violations, USA Today reports. The company also will pay $190,000 in fines. Similar violations were found between 2008 and 2010 at stores in nine states.

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Rockefeller Urges Obama Administration to Move Quickly on Black Lung Rule

Photo by Chuck Holton/Flickr

There is an alarming increase the number of coal miners—including younger and younger miners—diagnosed with deadly black lung disease. But a proposed federal rule limiting miners’ exposure to the coal dust that causes black lung is stuck in regulatory limbo and Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-W.Va.) has urged President Obama to end the delays and move the rule “as expeditiously as possible.”

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Inquiry Ordered into BART Talks

SEIU Local 1021 photo via FaceBook

California Gov. Jerry Brown (D) ordered a board of inquiry Sunday night to investigate the contract negotiations between the Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) authority and the unions representing the system’s 2,400 workers. The order averted a strike—for at least seven days—that was likely to begin this morning if negotiators were unable to reach a new contract.

The unions, Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU) Local 1555 and SEIU Local 1021, told reporters that they hoped the boards’ investigation would reveal BART management’s failure to bargain in good faith and its lack of commitment to reaching a fair settlement.

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OSHA to Investigate Second Louisiana Chemical Plant Explosion

For the second time in the past few days, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has launched an investigation into a chemical plant explosion in Louisiana. On Thursday, a plant in Geismar, La., exploded, killing one person and injuring 73. On Friday, a blast in Donaldsonville, La., killed one person and injured seven. The plant that exploded on Thursday hadn't been inspected by OSHA in 20 years. It is not yet known when the last inspection was done at the Donaldsonville plant.

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Investigation Launched into Death of Georgia Worker at Kia Supplier

Photo from Teresa Weaver Pickard's Facebook page

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has launched an investigation into working conditions at Sewon America's LaGrange, Ga., facility after an employee, Teresa Weaver Pickard, died after allegedly being forced to work in extreme heat. Sewon, a company that provides auto parts to Kia, denies Pickard's death was work-related, but an anonymous source at the plant has disputed Sewon's account of the tragedy.

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Walmart, Gap Refuse to Sign Bangladesh Safety Pact

Walmart, Gap Refuse to Sign Bangladesh Safety Pact

Following the tragic building collapse that killed more than 1,300 Bangladeshi garment workers and recent fires that have claimed the lives of more than 400 Bangladeshi clothing workers, more than 40 clothing retailers have signed on to the Accord on Building and Fire Safety. But two of the major retailers that count on low-wage Bangladeshi workers to make the clothes they sell have refused.

Today. Walmart and Gap announced they would develop their own nonbinding safety code and turned their backs on the accord developed by international and Bangladeshi unions, retailers and other groups—groups with firsthand knowledge of what’s needed for worker safety and of the deadly consequences of inaction.

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Under Cover Inside Bangladeshi Garment Factory

CBS News secretly filmed inside a Bangladesh apparel factory recently. There they found emergency fire doors blocked and just two fire extinguishers for a 100,000-square-foot area—another 11 shown on an evacuation plan were nowhere to be seen. Recent fires have claimed the lives of more than 400 Bangladeshi clothing workers.

 

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Retailers Key to Bangladesh Worker Safety, Investors Tell Walmart, Gap

Clean Clothing Campaign illustration

A coalition of faith organizations, investors and labor groups—including the AFL-CIO—is urging major U.S. retailers, including Walmart, Gap, Sears and others, to sign on to a binding workplace and fire safety plan to prevent tragedies such as the recent building collapse in Bangladesh that killed more than 1,100 garment workers and two 2012 fires that claimed the lives of more than 400 Bangladeshi clothing workers.  

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