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Committee on Education and LaborWorkforce ProtectionsCommittee on Natural ResourcesEnergy and Mineral ResourcesIntroducedJuly 15th, 2010
- house Committees
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Offshore Worker Whistleblower Protection Act
To provide whistleblower and other protections to certain offshore workers, and for other purposes.
Offshore Worker Whistleblower Protection Act - Prohibits an employer from discharging, discriminating, or engaging in retaliatory actions against specified employees who report to a government official any violation under the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (OCSLA). Sets forth complaint filing procedures with the Secretary of Labor regarding such retaliation. Requires employers to: (1) post a notice approved by the Secretary of Labor explaining employee rights and remedies under this Act in a conspicuous location in the place of employment where employees frequent; (2) provide training to employees about their rights under this Act within 30 days of employment, and at least once every 12 months thereafter; and (3) provide employees with a card containing a toll free telephone number at the Department of Labor to get information or file a complaint under this Act. Directs the Secretary of Labor, within 30 days after enactment of this Act, to designate agency officials to receive, investigate, and adjudicate complaints concerning violations under this Act. Prohibits an employer engaged in activities for the exploration for, and development and production of, minerals, alternative energy, or oil spill cleanup under a lease or permit issued under the OCSLA from discharging or constructively discharging an employee performing such activities on or in waters above the Outer Continental Shelf, and who has completed a probationary period of employment of up to six months, without reasonable job-related grounds based on: (1) failure to satisfactorily perform job duties, including compliance with the OCSLA and mandatory health and safety standards or regulations; or (2) other legitimate business reason. Authorizes an aggrieved employee, within one year of an alleged violation of such requirement, to file a complaint in an appropriate federal district court. Entitles a prevailing employee to: (1) reinstatement with backpay and compensatory damages; and (2) reasonable attorneys' fees and costs. Directs the Secretary of Labor and the Secretary of the Interior to enter into a cooperative educational and training agreement to jointly train Department of Labor and Department of the Interior inspectors of, and other related personnel on, onshore and offshore oil and gas drilling or production platforms or rigs.