What Happens When Companies Put Profit over People?

The phrase “putting profit over people” refers to any situation where an employer disregards safety protocols in order to save money or make a profit. This type of flawed decision-making occurs day in and day out. Common examples include:

• An employer failing to salt or sand a snowy walkway. Slip and fall injuries are often serious and in some cases, fatal. We have represented numerous clients who suffered permanent injuries after on-the-job fall down accidents. Failing to remove snow or ice in a timely fashion is a blatant example of employer negligence.

• An employer failing to train employees. Proper training is crucial, especially when employees work with heavy equipment, chemicals, or perform any type of physical labor. When an employer fails to provide their employees with adequate training they are putting their entire team at risk.

We recently settled a case on behalf of an experienced battery technician. Our client spent years installing, maintaining, and inspecting batteries on heavy machineries, like forklifts. Our client was sent to a job site in Yaphank, NY to swap out a forklift battery which weighed well over a ton. Instead of assigning a seasoned technician to assist our client in swapping the massive battery, the company assigned a junior employee who had only been operating that particular type of forklift for a short time. The junior employee made a serious error, and in doing so crushed our client’s hands. Our client had to have 2 fingers amputated. Had the junior employee been properly trained the entire situation could have been avoided.

• An employer understaffing. Understaffing is one of the most common ways employers cut costs. When an employer understaffs employees are often left with unreasonable workloads. Not only does understaffing put employees at a greater risk for injury, but it also increases the risk of injury for innocent bystanders. The nursing home industry is notoriously understaffed. This adds significant physical and mental stress to nursing home employees. Nursing home residents depend on staff to disburse medications, provide meals, and aide in mobility. When there isn’t enough staff scheduled to meet the basic needs of residents, the consequences can be serious and even fatal. 

Understaffing in high-risk industries, like the construction industry and the transportation industry is especially dangerous. Employees in these industries often work as a team to complete tasks. When the ‘team’ is lacking, it forces employees to cut corners and put themselves at risk for serious harm.

Chances are you know somebody who has been injured on the job.  While certain industries are more high-risk than others, any employer, regardless of industry, who doesn’t take adequate safety steps is doing a grave injustice to the employees who depend on them.

On-the-job injuries typically result in steep medical bills, lost wages, and an inability to complete day-to-day tasks. The personal injury firm of Jacoby & Meyers, LLP has years of experience successfully representing injured workers. If your injuries were caused by your employer’s negligence, our personal injury lawyers will hold them accountable. If you are too injured to travel to one of our offices throughout New York and New Jersey, we’ll come to you. Click here to contact us today.

For more information about workers’ compensation laws and factors that may affect your personal injury claim click here.

Dear friends and clients,

In furtherance of our firms culture of commitment to always act with compassion, concern and commitment to our clients, community and colleagues, we have been taking precautions to ensure that we are still fulfilling our ethical and moral obligations while prioritizing health, wellness and safety of all we can. 

As you know, the COVID-19 pandemic has introduced changes to many lives and businesses in our communities, and around the world. We, much like our neighbors and friends, have been taking precautions to ensure that we are still fulfilling our ethical and moral obligation to our clients, while also prioritizing the health, wellness and safety of our employees.

Until further notice, our offices will be closed to the public to encourage social distancing and to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Our team is still hard at work, many from home, and you may still call, email, live chat or video conference us if you or a loved one is seeking legal assistance. As the first law firm to offer our clients secure online access to their case file more than a decade ago, we have always been believers in using technology to make life easier and information more accessible. In these present times it has been a smooth transition for us to continue to offer our clients the same seamless and thorough service that you deserve and are accustomed to.

This pandemic is unlike anything any of us have faced in our lifetimes, and while we can continue to emotionally support one another through it all, staying home and keeping your distance is vital to the health and wellness of our communities. It does not feel good to break routines, cancel events and retreat from our normal, day-to-day socializing, but let us remember that, in times of strife, prior generations were asked to go to war and we are simply being asked to stay home. Your isolation equals more lives saved, and more time for medical providers to prepare for the treatment of patients battling COVID-19.

When the dust settles, we will join together with a greater appreciation for our lives, local businesses, loved ones and health. Until then, we will continue to offer guidance from a safe distance.

Very truly yours,

Andrew G. Finkelstein and the staff of Jacoby & Meyers, LLP