NEWS & BLOG

…they’d let civil lawsuits and juries take care of problems like KBR and Halliburton. A congressional committee is investigating what role defense contractor KBR played in the accidental electrocution of at least a dozen soldiers in Iraq during the past five years. The inquiry stems from whether KBR, which is contracted to maintain housing for troops, properly repaired electrical…
A California judge has ruled that Starbucks Corp. must pay baristas in that state more than $100 million for forcing them to share tips with shift supervisors. San Diego Superior Court Judge Patricia Cowett also found that state law prohibits managers and supervisors from profiting from employee gratuities and issued an injunction to stop the practice. Starbucks said it…
Good editorial in today’s Houston Chronicle from Alex Winslow of Texas Watch: Recent reports paint an ugly picture of irresponsible behavior by oil and chemical companies in Texas and across the country. In response to the BP Texas City tragedy, the federal agency responsible for policing workplace safety has started a review of the safety habits of U.S. refineries….
Jamie Jones, the young woman who alleges that she was drugged and raped by her Halliburton/KBR co-workers while she was in Iraq, has filed suit in federal court in Houston. Halliburton wants to force Jones’s claims into arbitration per her employment contract, which is outrageous given the inquities of arbitration against the plaintiff. Halliburton’s attorneys argued that the contract…
A group of 11 plaintiffs, including the family of ex Dallas Cowboys player Ron Springs, filed suit recently in U.S. District Court in Marshall to challenge the constitutionality of the state’s medical malpractice caps. The Houston Chronicle has a story here. The article suggests that the non-economic cap of $250,000 is per defendant, which is not the case. The…
Medicare, soon to be followed by private health insurers, will no longer pay for medical treatment of preventable injuries caused by medical errors. Medicare lists eight “hospital-caused preventable injuries,” including urinary tract infections from catheters, falls, pressure sores, and embolism. After October 1st, if a Medicare patient develops one of these eight injuries, Medicare won’t pay for treatment. Apparently…