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New York City Personal Injury Blog

Study shows rise in drugged driving, limits of current tests

Drivers in New York are probably aware that with the legalization of recreational marijuana in seven states and Washington, D.C., there has been a rise in drugged driving. The Governors Highway Safety Association released a study showing that between 2006 and 2016, researchers saw a 16 percent rise in the number of fatally injured drivers with drugs found in their systems. The total was 44 percent in 2016.

Of those drivers, 38 percent tested positive for some form of marijuana. This was followed by opioids at 16 percent and a combination of marijuana and opioids at 4 percent. In fact, 51 percent of the tested drivers had two or more drugs in their body. Alcohol was another common factor, being discovered in 49 percent of drugged drivers who died.

Anxiety is a common outcome of workplace harassment

When we are at work, we are in a professional environment. We expect that our coworkers will treat us with the same respect as we treat them. However, this is not always the case, and, unfortunately, issues regarding factors surrounding race, gender, sex or disability frequently arise in the workplace. Many of these issues and incidents can constitute sexual harassment.

Sexual harassment is an incident or a set of incidents in the workplace where inappropriate behavior was displayed and a hostile environment was created as a result. Workplace harassment could be experienced in a number of ways and has the potential to cause a wide range of stressors to the victim.

Inappropriate behavior seen in Interior Department

A report released in late 2017 showed that at least 38 percent of Interior Department employees reported facing harassment or discrimination at the workplace. As a result, the Interior Secretary announced a zero tolerance policy regarding this type of behavior by agency staff. The mandate is expected to face its first test with the admission of inappropriate behavior by a top-ranking official at the National Park Service.

The incident, which was first reported by the Washington Post, occurred when the deputy director allegedly made obscene gestures in a hallway at Interior headquarters. The actions were described by an anonymous agency employee who witnessed the alleged action after P. Daniel Smith first took office in March. Interior Secretary Zinke reported the accusation to the Inspector General that same month.

Police misconduct and personal injury claims

While police officers in New York are given broad powers to exercise their duties, there are also state and federal laws that protect the rights of citizens in the event of misconduct. In particular, Section 1983 of the Civil Rights Act of 1871 provides a check on the authority of those acting under state law.

While officers are granted immunity from lawsuits if they are performing duties, such as questioning suspects, this rule breaks down if they deprive suspects of their rights. Officers may be accused of false arrest, malicious prosecution, the use of excessive force or failure to intervene when another officer is using excessive force.

Hispanic construction workers at high risk of workplace accidents

Most people know that construction is a rather risky career path. There are many dangerous elements to a construction job, including the potential to fall from a height, heavy machinery, moving supplies and the potential for an electrocution. Anyone who works in this field could end up severely hurt or worse. However, certain people who work in construction face more statistical risk than others in this industry.

A recent report published jointly by American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE) and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) found that young, immigrant Hispanic construction workers are at the highest level of risk for injury or death while at work. For those who fall into this demographic or those who love and depend on someone who does, understanding the potential risks is critical.

What to do after a work injury as an undocumented immigrant

If you are an undocumented immigrant in New York, you might not know what your rights are. This can be true for times when you experience difficulties at work, for example, if you become injured in an accident. As an undocumented immigrant, it is important to read about your rights and how you can be protected by the law in the United States.

New York is a special city because it does not cooperate very much with the federal immigration authorities. This means that undocumented immigrants in New York are able to get municipal ID cards. However, many undocumented immigrants are wrongly told that they cannot receive compensation when they are injured while working.

Sexual harassment can lead to discrimination

New York employers that fail to adequately address sexual harassment complaints could leave themselves open to gender discrimination lawsuits. In fact, one law professor says that the current sexual harassment scandal at Nike illustrates the dangers of ignoring such claims.

According to an article in The New York Times, women working at Nike have endured sexual harassment for years. Some examples of the alleged behavior include a manager writing an email about an employee's breasts, a manager boasting about having condoms in his bag and a manager calling a female employee a sexist, derogatory name. These incidents were reported to human resources, but nothing was done. This is possibly because the company felt the complaints did not rise to the high legal standard for sexual harassment.

Motorcycles: Driving the fine line between safety and tragedy

It's not easy to ride a motorcycle. Other drivers don't always see you, and they make it hazardous for you to be on the roads by not giving you enough space. It's a reality that motorcyclists can get seriously hurt in a crash. What's worse is that serious injuries are more likely for motorcyclists because of their limited protection against impacts.

As someone who rides regularly in New York, you need to know the best ways to stay safe. Here are a few tips that could help you be safer on the roads in your area.

Sexual harassment statistics don't show whole picture

While federal statistics show that sexual harassment complaints are going down, many women in New York City and across the country continue to experience unwanted advances and other forms of harassment on the job. In 2017, the number of official sexual harassment complaints filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and state agencies was approximately 9,600, a 41 percent drop from 16,000 in 1997. From a high of 24 complaints per 100,000 women employees, in 2017, the number hovered at around 9 per 100,000.

However, many experts say that these statistics are less likely to reflect an equivalent decline in workplace sexual harassment. Instead, they say, 95 percent of companies now have private, in-house processes to deal with such complaints. Another 82 percent have a protocol for handling investigations into sexual harassment. This means that most investigations and complaints today are not reflected in public statistics. However, surveys also show that up to 75 percent of instances of sexual harassment are never reported at all.

You should never be made to feel embarrassed at work

Over the past year, there have been many high-profile legal cases centered on workplace harassment and sexual harassment. With these cases, the general public has been made more aware of the rights that both women and men have in the workplace, especially when it comes to different types of sexual harassment.

One of the biggest reasons why workers stay silent about the sexual harassment that they have endured is because they fear that they are exaggerating. The truth is that sexual harassment is any type of behavior that creates a hostile working environment. This means that if you are feeling embarrassed at work due to another worker's inappropriate actions, or if you dread coming into work each day because you do not know how a certain colleague will behave toward you, this is enough to constitute sexual harassment in the workplace, and it is enough for a legal case.

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