Employees have a right to take action with regard to workplace safety or health. If an employer retaliates against an employee for exercising his or her legal rights, by taking an unfavorable personnel action against the employee he or she has the right to file a complaint with OSHA under the whistleblower laws enforced by OSHA.
There should be no delay in filing a complaint as there are clear guidelines set forth by OSHA to file within a certain number of days after the alleged retaliation. OSHA has just made this easier for whistleblowers covered by one of 22 statutes administered by OSHA by establishing an online form to file complaints. You may now visit www.osha.gov/whistleblower/WBComplaint.html to file a complaint electronically.
Before the online form was developed whistleblowers could file a complaint by filing a written complaint or by calling the agency’s 1-800-321-OSHA (6742) number or an OSHA regional or area office.
“The ability of workers to speak out and exercise their rights without fear of retaliation provides the backbone for some of American workers’ most essential protections,” said Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health Dr. David Michaels. “Whistleblower laws protect not only workers, but also the public at large and now workers will have an additional avenue available to file a complaint with OSHA.”
For more information visit https://www.osha.gov/OshDoc/data_General_Facts/whistleblower_rights.pdf, read the press release or visit www.whistleblowers.gov.