Wednesday, September 14, 2011
Saturday, September 10, 2011
Saturday, September 3, 2011
Oh boy…..when go when Common Sense and the Government collide….It’s never a good thing.
For the EEOC to hold this company hostage and force them to maintain someone on payroll in a position of great liability is absurd.
I can see this leading to companies doing more drug and alcohol testing during the workday and release of employees for lesser (unrelated infractions) instead of being honest.
Smooth Move EEOC.
Feds to Drunk Drivers: Keep On Trucking
The Old Dominion Freight Line trucking company, based in North Carolina but with 211 service centers across the country, found itself with a personnel problem back in June 2009. An employee with an otherwise clean record approached management and confessed he had a drinking problem. Following U.S. Department of Transportation regulations, the company suspended this employee from his driving position, and referred him for substance abuse counseling.
The company took one other action: they told the alcoholic that they would never let him drive trucks for them again, even after he finished his counseling program. They have apparently told other alcoholic drivers the same thing in the past.
This is not an unreasonable position, for eighteen-wheel trucks are complex and dangerous vehicles, and alcoholism has a very high relapse rate. From an article at About.com:
There is evidence that approximately 90 percent of alcoholics are likely to experience at least one relapse over the 4-year period following treatment. Despite some promising leads, no controlled studies definitively have shown any single or combined intervention that prevents relapse in a fairly predictable manner. Thus, relapse as a central issue of alcoholism treatment warrants further study.
Unfortunately for the Old Dominion Freight Line, other trucking companies, and everyone who finds themselves driving in the shadow of an 18-wheeler with a drunk driver:
Alcoholism is a recognized disability under the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA), and disability discrimination violates this federal law. The EEOC said that the company violated both the ADA and the Americans With Disabilities Act Amendment Act of 2008 (ADAAA) by conditioning reassignment to non-driving positions on the enrollment in an alcohol treatment program. In addition, the EEOC argued that Old Dominion’s policy that bans any driver who self-reports alcohol abuse from ever driving again also violates the ADA.
The EEOC filed suit after first attempting to reach a voluntary settlement. The suit seeks monetary relief in the form of reinstatement to a driving position, back pay and compensatory and punitive damages, compensation for lost benefits for two drivers, and an injunction against future discrimination.
“The ADA mandates that persons with disabilities have an equal opportunity to achieve in the workplace. Old Dominion’s policy and practice of never returning an employee who self-reports an alcohol problem to a driving position violates that law,” said Katharine Kores, director of the EEOC’s Memphis District Office, whose jurisdiction includes Arkansas. “While the EEOC agrees that an employer’s concern regarding safety on our highways is a legitimate issue, an employer can both ensure safety and comply with the ADA.”
That’s from the official EEOC press release about the case. Do you want to know why our economy is in free fall, and unemployment remains high? It’s because every business in America is terrified of this out-of-control Administration and its bureaucratic legions. They perpetrate lunacy like this all the time, and your business could be their next target.
If they’re not sending Justice Department troops to confiscate the property of Gibson Guitars, which has the misfortune to be run by a Republican campaign donor, they’re dishing out madcap edicts that cause business costs to skyrocket. As Lachlan Markay of the Heritage Foundation explains:
If the EEOC prevails, of course, it will mean that Old Dominion will still be liable both for any damage to life or property that results from a potential relapse by one of its recovering drivers – which in turn increases the risks involved in investment in the company – and for the cost of trying to ensure that such damage never occurs. All of these new burdens will raise Old Dominion’s cost of doing business, and hence the cost of everything they transport. And all of this can’t possibly ensure that a recovering driver does not relapse without the company’s knowledge.
Your industry could be the next one targeted for demonization by desperate Democrats with plunging poll numbers. You might be the next to catch the madly rolling eyes of a bloated bureaucracy that has ruled common sense out of bounds. No wonder business expansion is static. Every employee you hire is a ticking time bomb of unpredictable liabilities, from exploding ObamaCare costs to incendiary Red Queen decrees from the EEOC.
It’s better not to hire anyone. It might be safest to go out of business altogether. At least that way you won’t be held liable for the damage and deaths caused by a drunk driver you were compelled by the federal government to put behind the wheel of an enormous truck.
Friday, September 2, 2011
Hey, I know my limits. How many times have you guys seen my hit 10 beers (plus some hard liquor) and then find a nice soft….awww hell, who am I kidding, ANYWHERE to pass out?
This guy actually was able to drive. WOW.
Man accused of drinking 30 beers before crash
JUNEAU, Wis. — A Fox Lake man accused of drinking at least 30 beers before causing a crash that injured five people has been bound over for trial.
Brandon M. Smith waived his right to a preliminary hearing Thursday. The 27-year-old is charged with second-offense driving while intoxicating, causing injury.
The Reporter in Fond du Lac says as a repeat offender Smith faces up to 10 years in prison.
Prosecutors say Smith told investigators he drank at least 30 beers on Aug. 20, then later lost control of his vehicle and collided with an oncoming vehicle. The other driver says she and her four passengers suffered neck and back injuries.
The criminal complaint says Smith's probation terms at the time prohibited him from drinking.
Defense attorney Steven Luchsinger declined to comment today.
Thursday, September 1, 2011
We’ve always been fans of Boulevard Breweries. From one of my earliest reviews with the Single Wide IPA and Nut Cracker Ale to one of their new offerings The Sixth Glass Quadrupel Ale, we’ve consistently found them to produce some of Missouri’s best beers.
On May 22, 2011, an EF5 Tornado hit Joplin Missouri.
This tornado just didn’t clip and edge of town, but instead cut a swath right through the middle, laying waste and destruction in it’s path. In fact, this tornado was the deadliest to hit the United States since 1947.
Estimates list $2.2 to $3 Billion (yes BILLION) worth of damage.
A sad day for Missouri…..but there is hope.
Even while FEMA diverts funds away from Joplin (for the lackluster Hurricane Irene), Boulevard Brewery has stepped up. With yesterday’s press release, Boulevard pledges $1 for every barrel sold in Missouri throughout the month of September.
While this isn’t on par with the FEMA relief, it is an excellent start…and hopefully other businesses and people will join in.
Thank you Boulevard Brewing. You make me proud to say I live in Missouri.
Boulevard Brewing Company is proud to announce a new effort to assist victims of the devastating tornado that hit Joplin on May 22. For every barrel of Boulevard beer sold in Missouri during the month of September, the company will contribute $1.00 to the American Red Cross to aid in its ongoing Joplin relief efforts. Irrespective of the Boulevard brand or package—a six-pack, a Smokestack bottle, or a pint at any Missouri bar or restaurant—money will be contributed to the humanitarian organization.
“We haven’t forgotten,” said John McDonald, Boulevard founder and president. “And with 40% of our sales taking place in the state, we hope to be able to make a meaningful contribution to the long road of restoration that lies ahead, helping our fellow Missourians rebuild their homes, their neighborhoods, and their lives.”
The EF5 multiple-vortex tornado that destroyed one-third of Joplin was one of the worst natural disasters in Missouri history. Meteorologists indicate that the 190-mph twister was the single deadliest tornado to strike the country in more than 60 years, claiming 134 lives and damaging or destroying more than 2,000 buildings, including Joplin High School and St. John’s Regional Medical Center. Analysts estimate the total cost of the disaster could top $3 billion.
“It’s no secret that Boulevard beer is one of Kansas City’s treasures,” said Matt Meyer, chief executive officer for the Greater Kansas City Chapter of the American Red Cross, “and the Red Cross is incredibly grateful that such an esteemed company has decided to demonstrate its commitment to its local communities throughout Missouri by assisting us in the Joplin relief effort.”
About the American Red Cross
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies nearly half of the nation’s blood; teaches lifesaving skills; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a charitable organization — not a government agency — and depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit www.redcross.org or join our blog at blog.redrcoss.org.
PS- Everyone- Please share on FB, Retweet or do whatever you do to pass this message on. While most of my readers never need inspiration to drink more beer, it doesn’t hurt that you are at least helping out others. In addition, if you have a little bit extra this month, please visit the Red Cross and donate. I’m sure the people of Joplin will appreciate it.