Friday, March 14, 2008

Another Arkansas Worker Killed on Job

James Ivy, 29, of Etowah, died instantly at the Tenaris Hickman plant in Armorel this morning when the pipe he was loading on a rail car rolled back and crushed him against a backstop. This is the third fatal industrial accident in Mississippi County, Arkansas, in less than three months.

The toll of workplace injuries, illnesses, and deaths remains unacceptably high. Each year, thousands of workers are killed, and millions more are injured or contract preventable diseases on the job. The state legislature is eager to provide millions of dollars in tax exemptions and direct subsidies for business and industry in the name "economic development," but a majority of our legislators and the Arkansas Chamber of Commerce oppose any improvement or expansion of the Workers' Compensation law to cover medical expenses for workers injured on the job.

With union backing, Congress passed important legislation to establish job safety and heath standards for every industry more than three decades ago. In recent years, however, many of the safeguards we fought hard for have been eroded by lax enforcement under the Bush Administration.

No comments: