Dr. Tonya Curry
American Public University
While there are an abundance of issues that could be discussed and cases whose precedent we could draw from for the purpose of properly elucidating the points of the assigned topic in reference to John R. Boatright’s “Individual Responsibility in the American Corporate System: Does Sarbanes-Oxley Strike the Right Balance?” assumption that the primary responsibility of corporate responsibility legislation is deterrence I’ve chosen to expand upon Chapter 3, Case 3, Exposing Workers to Plutonium and Chapter 6, Case 4, Predatory Lending at Countrywide Financial.
Several thousand uranium workers at Paducah Gasseous Diffusion Plant were exposed to plutonium in 1999. Hazardous material that was intentionally dumped in landfills seeped into wildlife areas and private water wells. No radiation monitoring procedure was in place to protect workers and they were told that risk was negligible. Workers did not wear sufficient personal protective equipment. Tests in 2000 determined radiation levels were more than 20 x maximum. The Clinton Administration announced it would compensate workers in 1999.
As you can see there was a serious moral lapse of judgment in properly monitoring radiation levels at the site, failing to inform workers of the risk, improper handling and storage which harmed the surrounding environment and to provide proper personal protective equipment for the workers handling the material? Some effort has been made to make restitution for the wrong. Unfortunately the damage is already done and the cleanup effort will take quite some time not to mention the health of the exposed workers. This situation should never have occurred as it should have been properly managed by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. Both of these agencies were responsible as far as negligent oversight and compliance of the...
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