Washington, D.C. December 21, 2010. Today, the House approved the Senate version of the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act (H.R. 2571), which contains strong whistleblower protections for food safety employees. This landmark legislation has now cleared Congress and will soon be signed into law by President Obama.
- Covers all employers “engaged in the manufacture, processing, packing, transportation, distribution, reception, holding or importation of food;”
- Allows workers have their case heard before a jury in federal court;
- Provides for reinstatement, back pay and compensatory damages.
“When workers see rats in the food, they must be able to sound the alarm,” said NWC Executive Director Stephen M. Kohn. “Employees who blow the whistle on food contamination will finally obtain protection,” Kohn added.
Mr. Kohn stated, “Today Congress closed a terrible loophole in whistleblower protection laws. This should serve as an example for legislative action needed to protect other workers who still fall outside the safety net, including those who work in the offshore oil drilling industry. We urge all Americans to sign the petition asking Congress to pass a national whistleblower protection law.”