Having just read your Labor Day Statement, we are convinced that Injured Overseas Contractors and their families are nowhere on your radar screen.
You say that over the last seven months you have met with many individuals and organizations. We were disappointed that you did not respond to our requests to meet with you. We had asked to discuss, in a helpful and positive way, the inequities these Injured Contractors suffer under the Defense Base Act which your department oversees.
You ask us in your statement to personally commit to play a role in the recovery of our economy and our nation. To reach out to those needing help. To do the work that will keep America Working.
Hilda Solis we ask you to personally commit that your/our Department of Labor allow us the opportunity to recover physically, mentally, and economically as the law provides under the Defense Base Act.
Reach out to your Department of Labor who is charged with ensuring that Defense Base Act Workers’ Compensation benefits are provided for covered employees promptly and correctly.
Do the work, get to know your OWCP/DHWLC/DBA, your OALJ’s, and BRB’s.
Open your eyes to who is standing in the way of ensuring that DBA benefits are provided for covered Injured Contractors promptly and correctly.
Read some of the decisions your ALJ’s make based on the testimony of questionable doctors, witnesses, and evidence.
Question the person who was put in charge of Policy, Regulations and Procedures for the Defense Base Act who cut her teeth with AIG and CNA’s defense lawyers and helped promote their biased book via this position of public service.
Look into the knee jerk, biased recommendations that come from some of your District Directors and some of their Claims Examiners.
Do they work for you, the injured contractor, the taxpayer or do they serve their own purpose?
Ask why CNA and AIG are never fined as the law requires for multitudes of blatant infractions of the law year after year.
Ask why CNA, AIG and the lawyers get away with relentlessly continuing hearings, thus dragging claims out for six years and longer while refusing to pay for medical and disability to the injured worker but buffing up their own financial award.
Some of these hearings will make public record of damning information vital to many other claims, including many that were already denied and will have to be re-examined.
Is your DoL helping to keep this information in the dark?
Will your legacy be the continued abuse of thousands of Injured Americans and Foreigners working on US Contracts when you personally could have stepped in and made this CHANGE?
What a stimulus to the economy it would be to get Injured Overseas Contractors and/or their families back to being the contributing members of America that they were working on behalf of when they were injured or killed working in countries all over the world.
The only stimulus the DBA currently provides is to insurance companies like AIG and CNA, hordes of lawyers, and your department facilitates it.
You came to us with the promise that there was a new sheriff in town and that you would be heard.
Make our Labor Day, be heard, speak up about these abuses to Injured Contractors and demand that they stop.
Maybe then, hopefully together, we can assure that the Defense Base Act is implemented as Congress intended.