Workplace Violence: An OSHA Update

On October 18, 2017, an employee of a Maryland granite company allegedly killed three co-workers and wounded two others at his place of employment. Police reported that the employee allegedly shot all five co-workers with a .380 caliber handgun. According to OSHA, “2 million American workers are victims of workplace violence each year.” For Fiscal Year 2015, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that workplace violence accounted for 417 homicides; 354 of these homicides were attributed to gun violence. A recent FBI study found that 80% of active shooter situations occurred at work. READ MORE

What Will Become Of Non-Disclosure Agreements After Weinstein Scandal?

According to a New York Times article published on October 5, 2017, employees of the Weinstein Company have agreements wherein they agree not to harm the company’s “business reputation” or “any employee’s personal reputation.” According to the article, employees who settled claims of sexual harassment against the company against the company and its co-founder, Harvey Weinstein, also signed agreements whereby they agreed to keep the claims and settlement confidential. For years, these agreements kept the substance and number of harassment allegations against Harvey Weinstein secret. READ MORE

Is There a Right to Free Speech by Employees in the Private Sector? (Re Posted)

On Friday, August 26, 2016, San Francisco 49er quarterback Colin Kaepernick made headlines by remaining seated during the national anthem before a pre-season game with the Green Bay Packers. He later explained his decision to sit to the national media: “I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color. To me, this is bigger than football and would be selfish on my part to look the other way. There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder.” READ MORE

Trying To Live In An Ethically Challenged World

We live in an ethically-challenged world. The every-day pressures of business economics, project deadlines, and client demands conspire against all design professionals every day to drive “professionalism” out of their practices. Design professionals, however, must strive to maintain an ethical practice because quite simply – lives depend on it. The National Society of Professional Engineers (NSPE) states as its fundamental Canon of Ethics that all engineers shall “hold paramount the safety, health, and welfare of the public.” And yet, every day, not infrequently with catastrophic consequences in terms of lives and financial costs, some engineers succumb to a corporate culture that tolerates

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