Missouri employees may be interested in a new announcement by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. The federal agency announced on Dec. 5 that whistleblowers will now be able to reach out online to OSHA investigators about potential workplace violations. OSHA says the new system for filing online complaints will provide whistleblowers with another form of communication that preserves their employee rights and protects them from retaliation.
Employees who are released from a job for any reason often hope to be treated fairly by former job supervisors when it comes to references. The fact is, there are few federal or Missouri-specific laws in place that prevent employers from telling the truth about what they know about a former employee, no matter how damaging it may be to the employee's future chances of finding a new job.
The former building commissioner of a town in Missouri filed a lawsuit against the town, claiming that she was wrongfully terminated from her job because of gender discrimination and as retaliation for acting as a whistleblower on some problems related to construction. The federal suit alleging the violations of her employee rights seeks reinstatement of her job, back pay, compensation for emotional damages and punitive damages in the amount of $2 million.
The federal government continues to incur debt, and while legislators cannot agree on exactly how it to gain and allocate federal funds, they don't want them wasted. Federal employees who report any fraud, waste or abuse that is being committed during government operations are protected under federal law from retaliation.
Being a whistleblower in Kansas or Missouri -- an employee who reports illegal or wrongdoings of their employer -- is not an easy decision. When an employee decides to act as a whistleblower, the employee may be placing his or her own employment in jeopardy for a greater good, a risk that the law attempts to protect them from. Many times a whistleblower is terminated by their employer and may need to file a wrongful termination lawsuit to rectify the situation.
Wrongful termination is illegal...and can cost a pretty penny. When a Missouri employee is the victim of wrongful termination, the employee may be entitled to financial compensation such as back pay and potentially employment-related compensation, including nonmonetary damages such as reinstatement.