Wednesday, July 30, 2003

Stop that bleeding and pee in this bottle boy!

What's the first thing you think of when someone gets hurt on the job? Unsafe working conditions? Unguarded machinery? Violated OSHA citations?

Nah. The guy was probably on drugs.

Workers Comp? Nah, he deserved what he got.

At least that's the philosophy behind a proposed Ohio law where business groups are again pushing to deny injured workers benefits if the workers were drunk or on drugs at the time.

The Ohio Supreme Court overturned a similar law last year that forced injured workers to prove they weren't under the influence of drugs or alcohol, but it was found by the court to violate constitutional protections against unreasonable searches.

The new bill is much better:
The proposed legislation offers specific examples of when a worker can be tested, such as when an employer suspects a worker is impaired or at the request of a doctor or police officer, Geiger said.

"You've got to specifically think there's a problem and specifically order a test when an injured worker shows up in the hospital," he said.
Oh, OK, I feel much better now.

But business groups are banking on more than just a a few different words to change the Court's mind. A new Republican justice has taken the seat of a retiring justice who voted against the last law.