A bill set to come before the U.S. House would gut health and safety standards at Department of Energy (DOE) weapons sites and put workers at DOE facilities, and residents of neighboring communities, at greater risk of exposure to hazardous materials and radiation.
United Steelworkers (USW) International President Leo W. Gerard raised those concerns in a letter sent to Rep. Howard P. “Buck” McKeon, (R-Calif.), chairman of the House Armed Services Committee. The committee approved the bill, the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for 2013, which is scheduled for a vote before the full House this week.
Gerard said many USW members at DOE facilities deal with operations that are completely unique to the DOE. As a result of these threats, more specific worker safety orders are necessary to provide the proper protection. Unfortunately, the bill would eliminate those protections and turn back the clock on long-established standards in nuclear safety ... more