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DOL/OSHA RIN: 1218-AD35 Publication ID: Fall 2020 
Title: ●Discrimination Against Employees Exercising Rights Under the Williams-Steiger Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970  

This document changes a rule interpreting the anti-retaliation provision of the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, 29 U.S.C. 660(c). That provision prohibits adverse action, such as a discharge, against employees because they have engaged in protected activity, such as complaining about unsafe or unhealthful working conditions. The revised interpretive rule clarifies the causal connection between the protected activity and the adverse action. 29 CFR 1977.6. In order to prove a violation of this provision the Secretary of Labor must show that but for the employee’s protected activity he or she would not have suffered an adverse action. This interpretation is based on Supreme Court precedents interpreting similar language dealing with causation under the anti-retaliation provision of title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, as well as other precedents. See University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center v. Nassar, 570 U.S. 338 (2013).

Agency: Department of Labor(DOL)  Priority: Other Significant 
RIN Status: First time published in the Unified Agenda Agenda Stage of Rulemaking: Final Rule Stage 
Major: No  Unfunded Mandates: No 
EO 13771 Designation: Not subject to, not significant 
CFR Citation: 29 CFR 1977   
Legal Authority: 29 U.S.C. 660(c)   
Legal Deadline:  None
Action Date FR Cite
Final Rule  03/00/2021 
Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required: No  Government Levels Affected: None 
Small Entities Affected: No  Federalism: No 
Included in the Regulatory Plan: No 
RIN Data Printed in the FR: No 
Agency Contact:
Anthony Rosa
Deputy Director, Directorate of Whistleblower Protection
Department of Labor
Occupational Safety and Health Administration
200 Constitution Avenue NW, Room N-4618, FP Building,
Washington, DC 20210
Phone:202 693-2199