At the end of this module, you will be able to:
- State the definitions of a miner and miners' representative
- State your right to protection from retaliation for filing complaints and refusing to work in unsafe conditions
- State your right to request and participate in mine inspections
- List your rights relative to the development of safety standards and access to information
- Describe your legal responsibilities as a miner
The following key questions are answered in this module:
What is the definition of a miner?
According to MSHA's Part 46.2, a miner is any person, including any operator or supervisor, who works at a mine and who is engaged in mining operations.
What are some of the rights that a miner and a miners' representative have?
As a miner or miners' representative, you have statutory rights and legal responsibilities, as granted by the Mine Act, that include: protection from discrimination; participation in inspections; compensation; contesting enforcement actions; training; and health protection.
Can a miner request an inspection of a mine site?
Yes. Miners have the right and are encouraged to confidentially request an inspection if they observe a violation in the Mine Act, a violation of health and safety standards, and or a situation which presents imminent danger.
Does the mine act protect miners' health?
The Mine Act provides miners with the right to medical examinations and the right to request studies if miners are exposed to toxic materials or harmful agents, such as fuels, solvents and various kinds of dust.
What if a miner makes a false statement or creates false certifications?
A miner can be fined up to $250,000 or imprisoned up to five years or both for knowingly making false statements orally or in writing, or making false certifications in documents required to be kept or filed with MSHA.
Below is a transcript of the video sample provided for this module:
As a minor, you have the responsibility to comply with all federal and state laws as well as the policies in place at your mine.
You have the responsibility to provide truthful statements in response to any inspection or investigation and on all documents and certificates required by MSHA.
In the event that you refuse to work in unsafe or unhealthy conditions, you have the responsibility to notify your supervisor or other relevant managers at your mine in order for them to address those conditions.
Use the additional resources and links below to learn more about this topic:
- US Department of Labor Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) – www.msha.gov
- MSHA Rights and Responsibilities Guide - http://arlweb.msha.gov/S&HINFO/minersrights/minersrights.asp
- Miners’ Representative Guide - http://arlweb.msha.gov/minersrepguide/minersrepguide.asp
- Miner’s Rights and Responsibilities Brochure - http://arlweb.msha.gov/S&HINFO/minersrights/MinersRightsTrifold.pdf