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Ohio State contests ruling that contracted illness was a workplace injury: Part 2

In our last posting, we discussed the facts leading up to a contested workers’ compensation claim that involves a worker and alumnus of Ohio State University. A workers’ compensation board ruled in favor of the employee in late December, holding that the illness contracted by the employee was caused by an inadequate cleanup of a flood in her building.

Ohio State University contested the ruling, leaving the employee disheartened with the employer that she once loved. “It’s frustrating to think that my place of employment, the place I graduated from and have been a supporter of for decades would think, for a moment, that I would be pursuing this for anything but what it is,” she lamented. “And that is, I was subjected to a bad work environment and I only, and truly only, hope that this is never repeated so that no one person or family has to ever go through what I did.”

During the December hearing, the employee presented evidence that tests had confirmed the existence of the spores in the building where the employee worked and during the period in which she was there. The university presented contrary evidence, but the board ruled in favor of the employee. According to the employee, no new evidence was presented for the second hearing on Wednesday, and was thus expecting the ruling to be upheld.

The employee’s case was not the only reported case of the illness related to the building in which she worked. A student who spent nearly 20 hours per week in the building and an office manager also reported contracting the illness after the flood.

Source: The Lantern, “OSU worker in lawsuit breathing easier almost 2 years after illness” Molly Gray, 1/31/11

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