Monday, June 1, 2009

Security Guards Now Longshore

In K.L. v. Blue Marine Security BRB No. 08-0789 (Apr. 16, 2009) the BRB was asked to review whether Claimant was excluded from coverage under Section 2(3)(A) of the Act, as the statute expressly excludes from coverage "individuals employed exclusively to perform office clerical, secretarial, security, or data processing work" .

The Board held in this case that Claimant was not excluded from the Act's coverage because he was not exclusively performing "office" security work. The Board determined that there was substantial evidence to support that Claimant was not working in an office or administrative space, but was instead working on a vessel subject to various marine hazards. It further determined that the exclusions in Section 2(3)(A) were intended by Congress to be interpreted narrowly, and noted that Claimant "was not confined, physically and by function, to an office or other administrative area on land." It thus found that Claimant "is not the type of security officer intended to be excluded pursuant to Section 2(3)(A) as he was exposed to traditional maritime hazards." and thus was held to be covered under the Longshore Act.

This at first glace seems to fly in the face of  the act itself, but we now have a precedent that really says only Security guards who work EXCLUSIVELY in an office can now be excluded.   How many of those are there?