For the first time since it’s had jurisdiction over the nation’s 22 federal whistleblower statutes, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has investigated more than 3,000 cases in a year. The fiscal year 2014 total of 3,060 establishes a new benchmark.

More than half of the cases investigated (57 percent) were safety-related and filed under the OSH Act’s anti-retaliation clause, Section 11(c).

OSHA dismissed an additional 1,652 complaints, and complainants withdrew another 710. In all, 3,271 complaints were filed in FY 2014, just one less than the year previously.

OSHA head David Michaels has said that the agency in 2015 is lowering its threshold for acceptance of a case from a “preponderance of the evidence” to “reasonable cause.”

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