The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), headed by David Michaels, is flexing its muscles all around, increasing fines, adding field inspectors, and now strengthening its whistleblower program by adding 25 agents to the 87 it already has.

In making the announcement, Michaels lamented the high dismissal rate of whistleblower claims (63 percent) and noted that "institutional barriers stand between whistleblowers and justice." He said he couldn’t believe that two-thirds of all claims are without merit.

Michaels ordered a "top-to-bottom review" of OSHA’s whistleblower program and vowed to work toward removing institutional barriers. As an example, he cited company policies that reward workers for no accidents as instead suppressing accident reports through peer pressure. He said he considers such practices a violation of OSH Act Section 11c.

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