Valerie Butera Quoted in “Legal Experts Weigh In: Handling OSHA Citations the Right Way”

EHS Today

Valerie Butera, a Member of the Firm in the Employment, Labor, and Workforce Management practice, in the firm’s Washington, DC, office, was quoted in EHS Today, in “Legal Experts Weigh In: Handling OSHA Citations the Right Way.”

Following is an excerpt of Ms. Butera's comments:

In addition to a likely 80% increase in penalties, OSHA has entered into an agreement with the Department of Justice encouraging inspectors to look for workplace safety violations when investigating environmental incidents. In the past, there was very little criminal enforcement of workplace safety violations because OSHA violations are classified as misdemeanors – OSHA generally found that it was not a good use of resources to prosecute. Under the terms of the agreement with Department of Justice, workplace safety violations uncovered during environmental investigations will be treated as felony environmental violations for purposes of criminal prosecutions.