This guy, who worked for the local railroads, came forward and filed formal allegations with OSHA, explaining that he was fired from his job because he reported his work-related injury. This guy was fired for doing what he was supposed to do, for himself and the future safety of others: when you are hurt while performing your work, then you report what happened.
OSHA explains in its order that the railroad powers that be did order an investigation into the cause of their employee’s injury. Then, they fired him. OSHA reviewed evidence provided to it and determined that not only did the worker do what he was supposed to do about reporting the on the job injury, he really and truly was hurt and it was NOT his fault.
OSHA is ordering the Illinois Central Railroad Co. and the Chicago, Central & Pacific Railroad to pay this former railroad employee more than $80,000 in back wages, compensatory damages and attorney’s fees. They are also ordered to explain to ALL their workers that whistleblowing is a good thing, and that federal law protects those that come forward and blow the whistle on employers who fail to do the right thing.
We congratulate this railroad worker and his family – and we tip our hat in respect to someone with enough courage to stand up against all that pressure and report what happened, and fight against a wrongful termination.
It takes guts to be a whistleblower. We know first hand that working for railroads is very, very dangerous, filled with hazards. Kudos to this worker for protecting himself, his family – and hopefully, making things a little bit safer for his fellow railroad workers!