Health and Safety

Una Guía de Lucha en Contra del COVID-19 para el Delegado de la UE: Como guiar a nuestros miembros durante una crisis de salud y económica sin precedente.

Spanish

Los delegados de la UE son nuestra primera línea de defensa en este nuevo frente. Los delegados tienen un papel especial para asistir a nuestros miembros en como confrontar a una situación que amenaza a sus vidas. Algunos de nuestros lugares de trabajo tienen que mantenerse abiertos para proveer servicios de sostenimiento de vida y los delegados necesitan abogar por protecciones especiales de trabajo.

A UE Steward’s Guide to Fighting COVID-19: Guiding our members through an unprecedented health and economic crisis.

English

UE Stewards are our first line of defense on a new front. Stewards have a special role to play right now to assist our members as they face a life-threatening situation. Some of our workplaces must stay open to provide life-sustaining services, and stewards will need to advocate for special workplace protections. Other workplaces must close or drastically reduce the number of workers present to prevent this disease from spreading more rapidly, and stewards will need to help workers navigate layoffs and maintain connections with members outside of work.

Safety Hazards in the Office

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Safety Hazards in the Office

In 1990 OSHA began a process that was supposed to end with the issuing of rules on workplace ergonomics to deal with many various forms of Cumulative Trauma Disorders (CTD). The issuing of these new rules has been stalled in Congress for 8 years by pro-business republicans and democrats.

So what is "ergonomics" and "CTDs" and since OSHA hasn’t issued these rules can we still file grievances over these type of health & safety problems?

Body Mapping

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Body Mapping

Sara Watkins is the steward for the clerical unit at Haliburton Prevaricators Inc. In her job she gets to talk to many of the clerical workers who work in different departments. For the last month or so she noticed that there were more complaints about aches and pains, and there seemed to be people wearing wrist braces. She spoke to the company's health & safety person but she was told that there was no increase in injuries.

OSHA's VPP Program

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OSHA's VPP Program

In 1982 the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) started a new program called the Voluntary Protection Program (VPP). Under this program, if corporations met certain health and safety guidelines and had employee involvement programs, they could be exempted from random OSHA inspections. This idea was met with skepticism from unions and health and safety activists.

Medical Information Requests and HIPAA

English
Cartoon image of a worker typing on a computer

Dear UE Steward,

The UE Steward on “Information Requests” stated that our employer must provide us with medical information; however, it may be considered confidential. Here is a situation that just occurred with us.

George Scott injured his back at work. After going through therapy his doctor released him to return to work but with a weight lifting restriction. The doctor said this restriction could be removed after some time passed. Our employer refused to take George back to work, saying there wasn’t any light duty work that he could do. We filed a grievance on George’s behalf stating that many other people had come back to work on light duty. We provided the company with a list of names of employees who had light duty and we asked to see their medical records. We know we can prove that other workers had the same lifting restrictions. The personnel manager refused stating that under HIPAA he wasn’t allowed to release any medical information about employees.

What is HIPAA and is he right?

Joe Gerraneo
UE Chief Steward
Burnemup Tool Co.

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