OSHA News Release - Table of Contents
Trade News Release Banner Image

Region 9 News Release: 11-118-SAN (SF-21)
Feb. 1, 2011
Contact: Deanne Amaden
Phone: 415-625-2630
E-mail: amaden.deanne@dol.gov

US Labor Department settles whistleblower suit against US Navy contractor
NWS Corp. employee working at San Diego, Calif.,
installations awarded $45,000 in compensation

SAN FRANCISCO – The U.S. Department of Labor has reached a $45,000 settlement agreement with Westfield, Mass.-based U.S. Navy contractor NWS Corp. after finding that the company wrongfully terminated an employee working at San Diego, Calif.-area naval installations.

An investigation by the department's Occupational Safety and Health Administration determined that the employee was terminated for filing a safety complaint with the state OSHA program, Cal/OSHA. The employee previously had complained to NWS management for being required to climb microwave towers, work in manholes and enter asbestos-filled buildings without safety training or equipment while working at several San Diego military installations, including the Naval Amphibious Base at Coronado, the Naval Air Station at North Island and the Naval Air Station OLF at Imperial Beach. NWS was under contract to perform installation, construction and maintenance of cable and Internet systems for the Navy.

"We will vigorously pursue employers who attempt to stifle workers' voices," said Ken Atha, OSHA's regional administrator in San Francisco. "NWS Corp. made a serious mistake by taking action against a worker who complained about unsafe working conditions and by failing to make restitution following OSHA's findings."

The Labor Department's Office of the Solicitor filed a suit on behalf of the secretary of labor in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California on June 7, 2010, after NWS Corp. refused to