Perspective: OSHA penalties are too low for serious workplace violations

By Martha McCluskey, Center for Progressive Reform and the University of Buffalo, in the Buffalo (NY) News

Jul 20, 2016

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Richard Wade, a Tonawanda Coke worker, died because the company failed to comply with well-known safety requirements for locking out machines during maintenance, according to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) report on the fatality issued last week.

This preventable death is an egregious example of insufficient and ineffective workplace health and safety enforcement. The median penalty for worker fatalities during the Obama administration was $5,800, less than the cost of an average funeral.

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