Blog

  • 26 Apr 2023

    A FedEx Worker Was Killed on the Job. Her Case Wasn’tan Anomaly

    Jessica James didn’thave to die.  

    Last year, James was killed three months short of her thirty-third birthday at FedEx’s World Hub in Memphis, Tennessee. The forklift she was driving flipped over, crushing her underneath.  

    Her death was no unforeseeable freak accident. James was driving on a metal ramp to deliver a load of packages into a FedEx truck. Weeks earlier, an inspection found that the ramp was damaged, with a cracked surface and repairs needed on its tires and bolts.  

  • 21 Apr 2023

    Workers’ Memorial Week: Q&A with Jessica E. Martinez

    On April 28, 2023, communities across the U.S. will come together for Workers’ Memorial Day to mourn workers killed on the job and advocate for safer working conditions.  

    Workers’ Memorial Day commemorates the enactment of the federal Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA), promising every worker the fundamental right to a safe job. The law’s passage in 1970 resulted from the tireless efforts of workers, unions and social justice activists who organized for safer working conditions and demanded action from the government to protect working people.  

    We sat down with National COSH’s Co-Executive Director Jessica E. Martinez to learn how they commemorate workers on April 28 and the week leading up to this day.

  • 10 Apr 2023

    We Have a Child Labor Crisis, Not a Worker Shortage

    Should a thirteen-year-old be working a hazardous job at night?

    Packers Sanitation Services Inc. apparently thinks so. In 2022, the company hired a thirteen-year-old child from Guatemala as a night shift cleaner at a Grand Island, Nebraska meatpacking plant. The facility is owned by JBS, one of the world’s largest food companies.

    The girl’s employment “came to an abrupt end after a nurse at Walnut Middle School found chemical burns, blisters and open wounds on her hands and one knee,” The Washington Post reported. The injuries arose from exposure to hazardous chemicals used to clean the blood, fat and animal parts that remain after a day on the killing floor.  

  • 9 Jan 2023

    COSHCON2022: “Let’s do a worker-led movement”

    “We had no money,” recalls Derrick Palmer. “We didn’thave advice. All we had was two tables and two tents. We said: ” You know what, let’s do a worker-led movement. Let’s just shoot our shot.” ”

    Palmer, who works at Amazon’s JFK8 warehouse on Staten Island, is vice president for organizing for the independent Amazon Labor Union (ALU). He and his co-workers shocked the world in March of 2022, when a grassroots operation, funded and organized by workers themselves, beat back an aggressive anti-worker campaign from one of the world’s largest and wealthiest corporations to establish the first-ever labor union at one of Amazon’s U.S. facilities.

  • 4 Oct 2022

    Workers tell OSHA: We want actions, not words

    A shattered arm. A cover-up of safety violations. Workers dying, with minimal penalties for employers.

    That’s the kind of testimony rank-and-file workers and safety advocates brought to Washington DC last week. The occasion was a first-ever Workers’ Voice Summit, convened by the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), the federal agency responsible for workplace safety.

     

  • 15 Aug 2022

    COSHCON2021: Building a movement and a community

    “When we come together, we can win”  was the rallying call by  Dr. Linda Rae Murray  that launched the 10th annual  National Conference on Worker Safety and Health  (COSHCON2021) in December.

    Our growing movement for safe and fair workplaces is at a pivotal moment. Workers and families are confronting a deadly pandemic; heat stress, extreme weather, and abuse and indifference from unfair employers.