Many Americans wonder when the troops will return home. Another question to ask is this: how will we take care of the troops when they return home? Against this background, Congress has a real interest in regulating the civilian employment relationships of uniformed service members.
Currently there is no federal law that protects height discrimination, assuming it is within normal limits and not the result of some disability. And there is apparently only one state, Michigan, that specifically includes height in its list of protected categories. Massachusetts is currently considering such legislation, and at least two municipalities, both in California (are you surprised?) have included height as a protected category: Santa Cruz and San Francisco.
The possibility that a tragic event may occur at an office or place of employment is not first and foremost on the minds of every worker. But when it happens, it makes the news and strikes fear among all workers.
The fatal shootings at the University of Alabama, Huntsville, should serve as a much-needed wake-up call for S.C. employers to assess and address the risk of workplace violence.
A landmark decision was recently issued by the Fourth District appellate court in Springfield making restrictive covenants substantially easier to enforce in central Illinois. As a result, businesses in central Illinois will have greater control over the activities of departing employees.
- Permanent Residence: First Preference Priority Worker Category Provides an Opportunity to Jump to the Head of the "Green Card" Line2.2.10
In an age when the ubiquity of computers has made the exchange of data effortless, a school of thought has emerged that suggests that "information wants to be free."
Labor and employment bills being considered in the U.S. Congress may quickly silence employers' celebration of a fresh New Year. A wave of legislation proposed in 2009—all of which favors employees over business owners—could become law in 2010. Below are several developments that, in the year ahead, may open workplace doors to litigation, increased unionization efforts and other potential changes.
The FBI estimates that each year 1 million people are exposed to some form of workplace violence. A recent study found that the No. 2 cause of on-the-job deaths among women was workplace violence. No business is immune from the risk of violence on its premises.
Although more than 40 different labor and employment law bills were proposed in 2009, Congress acted on very few of them. In 2010, the story could be quite different - especially if Congress can pass health care reform legislation early in the year. At least seven areas of labor and employment law have great potential to be "hot" this year.
The new face of Congress and the new presidential administration have made it clear that the rights of employees to organize are a top priority. As evidence, one need only look to the Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA), which would be the most pro-labor bill to pass Congress since the New Deal era Wagner Act.
If you are an employer, chances are you haven't yet had an opportunity to make New Year's resolutions. January is full of tasks such as open-enrollment for benefits and sending W-2 and 1099 forms, and you may not have had time to ponder your goals for 2010.
In today's wireless environment, BlackBerrys, iPhones and other handheld devices increasingly provide employees with round-the-clock access to e-mail from remote locations. While wireless gadgets allow us to maximize productivity in competitive economic times, they may also give rise to overtime, minimum wage and other wage payment claims.
Are your files in order? Vigilant maintenance of mandatory and recommended documents are the first line of defense for avoiding lawsuits and liability for systematic noncompliance.
Blogs are booming. Employees are now using these Internet diaries to broadcast information and opinions worldwide. Inevitably, some of those employees will post hostile, false, or confidential information about their employers and fellow employees.
Organized labor's membership in the private sector has plummeted to 7.8 percent – an all-time low. As a result, unions have turned to an aggressive legislative agenda designed to tilt the scales in their favor. Among their priorities are the deceptively-named Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA) and the Re-Employment of Skilled and Professional Employees and Construction Tradeworkers (RESPECT) Act.
- The Federal Government and Immigration Enforcement in 2010: I-9 Audits, Site Visits and a Big Push for E-Verify12.1.09
The Obama administration's Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) under the leadership of Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano implemented a bold new worksite enforcement strategy and shifted the focus onto employers in 2009.
According to a recent survey, information you believe is confidential may also be in your competitor's offices. A report from the Ponemon Institute details that companies are doing a poor job preventing former employees from stealing data.
Now that the U.S. House of Representatives has passed its version of a health care reform bill, all eyes turn to the Senate.
In today's tough economy, employers worldwide have been forced to shed key personnel in order to minimize costs. Companies large and small have reduced their workforce by drastic numbers, many left with no choice but to lay off valued employees.
The Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2009 (the "Act") was the first piece of legislation signed by President Barack Obama. There was much anticipation and fanfare surrounding the Act's inception, passage and enactment. Many organizations and individuals were quite outspoken in their support or criticism of the law.
Approximately one year after former President Bush signed the Americans with Disabilities Amendments Act (ADAAA), the EEOC has finally issued proposed regulations and an Interpretive Guidance for public comment. As expected, the new regulations make significant changes in how certain terms under the ADA are defined, which certainly will give rise to more disability claims.
Whether an employer may temporarily reduce the work schedules and, correspondingly, the salaries of exempt employees in order to avoid job layoffs during difficult economic conditions was recently the subject of an opinion letter by the California Labor Commissioner.
- Keeping the Ball in Your Court: Creating Allies in Your Workforce to Minimize OSHA Inspections, Citations, and Penalties10.29.09
- Preparing for Pandemic Influenza: Re-Thinking Employee Health & Wellness Before a Crisis Affects Your Workplace10.29.09
An influenza pandemic could have a major effect on the economy and all areas of commerce and employment. Business planning for pandemic influenza is essential to minimize a pandemic's impact. In the event of an influenza pandemic, employers will play a critical role in protecting employees' health, safety, and overall well-being.
Halloween is not just for children anymore. Over the last few years, the number of employers allowing employees to wear costumes to work in celebration of Halloween appears to be increasing and, in some cases, this has even been embraced by the general public.
More than a year ago, then-President George W. Bush signed the Americans with Disabilities Amendments Act (ADAA) to provide greater protection to the disabled in the United States, as well as to readjust the balance between employer and employee interests. The original ADA focused on the individual's disability and contained a specific definition of disability.
It's no surprise that in today's tough economic climate many employers are cutting back on holiday celebrations. And while business owners intend to thank employees for the year's hard work, they often disregard the liabilities involved in throwing a company bash for their staff.
Despite the recession, the holiday season will undoubtedly be the busiest time of year for retailers - providing them with the opportunity to gain some profitable momentum as the year comes to an end. Many retail companies will rely upon short-term staffers to help them get through the craziness of the holiday shopping season.
As of Nov. 21, employers are required to comply with yet another law that restricts disclosure of employee health information. The new law will join others already on the books that require HR leaders to exercise discretion and vigilance when it comes to dispersing and safeguarding such information. However, a few misconceptions about medical-privacy laws and the workplace need to be clarified.
Although the Employee Free Choice Act has gotten most of the attention, it is not the only pro-labor legislative proposal that warrants scrutiny.
One such initiative, the Patriot Corporations of America Act of 2009, deserves particular focus because it would greatly increase the success of union-organizing drives.
Presenting some troubling scenarios for nursing supervisors, the state's "Safe Hospital Staffing Act" took effect earlier this month. Among other things, the new law prohibits hospitals from requiring nurses to work mandatory overtime.