FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
AUGUST 22, 2017
MSHA appointment troubling
[TRIANGLE, VA] United Mine Workers of America (UMWA) International President Cecil E. Roberts issued the following statement today:
“The appointment of Mr. Wayne Palmer as Acting Assistant Secretary for Mine Safety and Health is a matter of great concern to us. At a time when fatalities and serious injuries are on the rise again, after having fallen for six consecutive years, the appointment of someone with absolutely no apparent experience in mine safety and health to this position is troubling, to say the least.
“Mr. Palmer may be a fine man and has experience working in the government. But what does he know about float coal dust and its dangers? What does he know about mine inspections and why they are important? What does he know about the need for ventilation, roof control, rock dusting, and a hundred other things that the person in charge of keeping our miners safe and secure needs to know?
“The position of Assistant Secretary for Mine Safety and Health is a very important one for the lives and health of our nation’s miners. It needs to be filled by someone who is an expert in the field, so that miners can have confidence that their government is putting the best people in positions to watch out for them on the job. I am not sure this appointment meets that test.”