Stanley Sporkin, BP's Ombuds, is drawing increased attention as politicians and journalists probe the oil giant's safety record. Recent revelations include the following.
- BP employees in Alaska have raised a list of safety concerns that could endanger Prudhoe Bay. In a letter to BP Alaska President John Minge earlier this year, BP's Sporkin said his office has been "engaged in oversight of the overtime and staffing issues that continue to be raised by employees." (Truthout.)
- Jeanne Pascal, a former attorney at the Environmental Protection Agency, revealed her role in the creation of the BP Ombuds program. She said that BP opposed the appointment of Sporkin and wanted an insider in the role. Pascal said that the issue of keeping Sporkin as ombudsman for the workers was important to her because she recognized that BP was a “retaliatory company.” (Corporate Crime Reporter.)
- U.S. Congressman Bart Stupak, who chairs the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, said BP Chairman and President Lamar McKay wanted to shut down the Ombuds office by improving the corporate culture enough to make the Ombuds unnecessary. Stupak said that he urged McKay not to eliminate the office because it serves a significant role in investigating employee complaints. (Stupak Statement.)
Meanwhile, Sporkin will be a featured speaker at the September conference of the Corporate Executive Board Company, a commercial firm that provides best practices research and analysis to business executives. Sporkin and former Chairman and President of BP America, Bob Malone will offer insights into how the company handled crises in the past and created the Ombuds program. (CEB Views.)
Related posts: Critics Question Independence of BP Ombuds; BP Ombuds Could Draw Scrutiny in Gulf Oil Spill Investigation; Is the BP Disaster a Wake-up Call for the Ombuds Field?
Update 6/23/10: Progressive blogger Stephen Lendman profiles Sporkin and calls him "BP's Fixer." (Baltimore Chronicle.)