OSHA Cites 2 PA Companies For Violations Involving Foreign Students

According to a February news release, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration cited Exel Inc. Palmyra and SHS Staffing Solutions, Lemoyne for workplace safety and health violations.
Exel, owned by Hershey Co. has been hit with proposed penalties of $283,000 while SHS, the agency that hired a group of foreign students for summer jobs at the facility is facing a proposed $5,000 fine.
An OSHA inspection was done in response to a complaint filed by National Guestworker Alliance on behalf of the group of students. The complaint alleges a number of abuses of the student visa program which is designed to promote cultural exchange as well as exploitative and unsafe conditions in the workplace.
The students were hired to repackage Hershey candies for promotional displays.
OSHA cited Exel with six willful violations for failing to record injuries and illnesses on the OSHA 300 log for four years, evaluate the accuracy of the 300 logs before certifying them for three years, and develop and implement an effective hearing conservation program.
SHS Staffing Solutions has been cited with one serious violation for failing to provide training to employees on the lockout/tagout of energy sources.
Exel also has been cited for three other-than-serious violations carrying a $3,000 penalty related to inadequate record keeping.
Additionally, the Labor Department’s Wage and Hour Division is investigating potential violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act relating to the work performed by the CETUSA-sponsored foreign students. Because CETUSA has withheld documents from investigators, the secretary of labor filed a petition to enforce an administrative subpoena against CETUSA in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania in order to complete this investigation.
Both Exel and SHS Staffing Solutions have 15 business days from receipt of their citations and penalties to comply, ask for an informal conference with OSHA’s area director, or contest the citations and proposed penalties before the independent OSHA Review Commission.

Contact Information