California Passes Laws to Enhance Worker Safety

In late September of 2021, California Governor Gavin Newsom signed a bill into law, affecting workers’ rights. The bill covers many aspects, and it includes new provisions to protect workers’ safety.

The law creates two new categories for safety violations: enterprise-wide violations and egregious violations.

Enterprise-Wide Violations

This category strikes at the culture of a negligent company. Within a franchise, there may be specific managers who violate safety regulations. If discovered, they will likely be held accountable for their negligence. Sometimes, however, a large corporation has violations written into the very practices of its organization. Some companies are smart enough to avoid writing these practices into their bylaws, but many of its stores or branches clearly have a culture of ignoring certain regulations.

The new law gives Cal/OSHA (California Division of Occupational Safety and Health) greater authority to penalize such companies. It can investigate a company’s various franchises, and if it sees a pattern of violations, it can take action.

Egregious Violations

This category holds a particularly negligent employer accountable. If, for instance, an employer took no action to rectify a safety hazard for their workers, they may be guilty of an egregious violation. A violation that led to many injuries qualifies, as does worker deaths or a worksite catastrophe. Employers who have a history of violations and bad-faith actions can also be held accountable by this new standard.

Contact Us for Help

Whenever a new law is implemented, it takes time for people to settle into the new dynamic. Sometimes, the law is broken out of ignorance or simply because people haven’t grown accustomed to it.

At Ufkes & Bright, we endeavor to stay up to date with changing labor laws. Furthermore, we act as a watchdog. Our job is to keep an eye on both employers and authorities, helping ensure that everyone is following the current standards.

If you’ve been hurt on the job, reach out to us today for a free consultation. We may be able to investigate your situation, checking for violations of these new laws. Our number is (714) 909-2609, and you can contact us online.

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