The Oregon Prefered Worker Program

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Posted by Tom on September 29, 1999 at 23:51:06:

In Reply to: Re: 80 million to employers & the Oregon Prefered Worker Program posted by Dan Gammon, reemployment consultant for Preferred Worker Program (PWP) on September 29, 1999 at 13:14:17:

Welcome to this forum Dan.

This is a grey area for most Injured workers because if an employee
is injured badly enough that they cannot return to their previous place
of employment then the Injured worker has the right to assistance.
With the raised standards set-up because of the legislature a worker
dosen't always know what to expect. If a worker is recieving time loss
while in this program then the W/C carrier has a stake in this program.
The program dosen't pay for child care so that expense has to come out
the Injured workers pocket and at 66 percent of the workers base wages
that person will more than likely drop out of the program.
It is not the Prefered worker program that I have a problem with it is
the Insurance companys that make this program difficult for the worker.
If a worker qualifies for re-training and all the while recieving time loss
if the worker is Ill, or has a flat tire or cannot find a babysitter
and cannot make it to a class that is provided through the PWP there is
nothing to stop the Insurance company from denying the worker time loss
for that week. The Insurance companys have policy's that effect the injured
worker while being involved with this program because they are paying the
worker involved in this program thru time loss benefits.
Workers comp carriers don't need an excuse to take away timeloss
making it difficult for the workers to remain in the program, That is why
so many workers drop out because they can afford to make a mistake.
This program is great for people that qualify but there is nothing for
the worker who dosen't.
I was told by my claims rep that I qualified for the Prefered worker card.
This card would Identify me as an Injured worker and a risk to an employer.
Don't think that I am putting down this program, There are problems with
all programs that are supposed to help people, It is very simply the Insurance
companys that make it difficult for the Injured worker who participates in PWP.
You said that you would like to hear from people who know of employers who fraud
this system, How can an employee do that. My previous employer frauded the system
and nothing was done, but they did enjoy the wage subsidy. After I was returned to a regular work
status my employer said that "Now the company will have to go back to paying my full wages".
This is the bull that Injured workers have to put up with because of an On the job Injury.
I would recommend that the status of the Injured worker be followed closely so that the worker
will benefit from PWP.
I am being honest with you Dan about PWP, Like I said before it is not PWP that is bad
it is the Insurance companys that make PWP difficult for the worker.

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