On August 7, 2023, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) issued proposed regulations to implement the new Pregnant Workers Fairness Act (PWFA), which was enacted by Congress last December as part of a federal omnibus funding bill and which became effective on June 27, 2023. The proposed regulations provide guidance on how the EEOC plans to interpret employers’ obligations under the PWFA – and in some cases, expands the obligations beyond even the heightened standards under the Americans with Disabilities Act.Continue Reading EEOC Issues Proposed Pregnant Workers Fairness Act Regulations
In an unsurprising decision applicable to both unionized and non-union employers, the National Labor Relations Board changed its standard for assessing whether seemingly neutral work rules violate the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA). The Board’s decision in Stericycle, Inc. applies to challenges to an employer’s maintenance of work rules that do not expressly apply to employees’ protected activity. (Note: This decision does not alter Board law concerning the analysis of rules that explicitly restrict activities protected by Section 7 of the NLRA, or rules enacted in response to activities protected by the NLRA, such as union organizing.)Continue Reading Employers – The NLRB Has Just Made Many Common Work Rules Unlawful
As most of us know, Hollywood is striking (or more specifically, the members of the writers’ and actors’ unions). Some of you may have seen media reports, like this CNN article, about the unions filing unfair labor practice (ULP) charges with the National Labor Relations Board over unsafe picketing conditions. Which may cause some of you to wonder – what is an employer’s responsibility with respect to those conditions?Continue Reading Are Employers Supposed to Protect Striking Employees?
A few years back, during the initial surge of corporate diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives in response to the killing of George Floyd and the #BlackLivesMatter movement, I wrote a blog post that applauded corporations for focusing on the issue – but also cautioned them to avoid inadvertently violating anti-discrimination laws in their eagerness. Well, following the Supreme Court’s recent decision prohibiting the use of race in college admissions, my (somewhat prescient?) warnings have taken on new urgency.Continue Reading Hey CEOs – Be Careful with Those Diversity Initiatives!
On June 29, 2023, a unanimous U.S. Supreme Court ruled that religious accommodations under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act must be provided to employees or prospective employees unless the employer is able to demonstrate that the burden is substantial. The Court rejected the “de minimus” standard as a misreading of the Court’s precedent in TWA v. Hardison.Continue Reading The Supreme Court Redefines the Religious Accommodation Obligation for Employers
On June 29, 2023, a divided U.S. Supreme Court ruled that affirmative action in student admissions decisions at Harvard University and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill violated the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution. What does the Court’s holding mean for employers?Continue Reading What the Supreme Court’s Affirmative Action Ruling Means for Employers
When an employer receives a complaint of workplace misconduct, they often must conduct an investigation that may include interviewing employees. Interviewing an employee is not as simple as one may assume. Employees may have legal rights and protections that restrict an employer’s ability to interview them. Navigating those rights and protections is essential in insulating employers from possible civil and criminal liabilities.Continue Reading When an Employer Interviews an Employee, The Power of the NLRA Compels You!
We have a “shot and chaser” for you today.
“Shot” is our 2022 blog about an employee whose spiteful employer paid him in pennies – 91,500 of them, covered in oil – to remit his weekly wage of $915. The employee complained to the U.S. Department of Labor.Continue Reading Paying Wages by Pennies is Costly
In a move that surprised absolutely no one, the National Labor Relations Board has reversed course on yet another issue – the standard for determining whether an individual is an employee, who is subject to the National Labor Relations Act, or an independent contractor, who is not. The Board’s decision will once again make it harder to establish independent contractor status.Continue Reading U-Turn! NLRB’s “Modified” Independent Contractor Standard Favors Findings of Employee Status
Following my recent post on menstrual leave, I saw a New York Times article on “menopause-friendly workplaces.” Now that’s a term I had not seen before in my many years of practicing employment law. But apparently it’s a thing in Britain, and may be spreading to US companies.Continue Reading Menopause-Friendly Workplaces?