Today Ellie Barbarash, Health and Safety Coordinator for Health Professionals and Allied Employees, drew upon her experience and long track record of filing successful OSHA complaints.

With changing CDC COVID guidance and no OSHA standard for infectious disease, Ellie identified five health and safety areas relevant to COVID exposure including respiratory protection, PPE, hazard communication, recordkeeping, and, depending on the circumstances, bloodborne pathogens. Ellie talked us through collecting worker exposure stories, collecting information, identifying witnesses, composing and submitting a complaint.

Ellie acknowledged that an effective complaint is labor-intensive. However, doing your homework and filing a detailed complaint does significantly increase the likelihood of success — Ellie herself has filed more than a dozen complaints during the pandemic that have resulted in a citation. More than 70 people attened this webinar.

Additional resources:

Ellie’s PowerPoint presentation

HPAE’s Exposed and At-Risk report

HuffPost article: “Workers tried to blow the whistle on COVID. Then people died.”

See you on November 10th: Next Tuesday, the Saving Lives, Protecting Workers series will be taking a break. The following week, on November 10, we’ll be joined by Peg Seminaro, former Director of Occupational Safety and Health for the AFL-CIO.