Federal Court Enjoins Enforcement of Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces Executive Order

Randi Klein Hyatt
Randi Klein Hyatt
10/28/2016
Readers of this blog are well aware of President Obama’s Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces Executive Order (Executive Order 13673), which would require certain federal contractors and subcontractors to disclose alleged “violations” of a number of federal labor laws.  That Order was set to go into effect on October 25, 2016 for prime contractors on solicitations and contracts estimated at $50 million or more.  The Order was to be phased in for...
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DOL Releases Guidance For Reporting Workplace Injuries

Randi Klein Hyatt
Randi Klein Hyatt
10/26/2016
On October 19, 2016, the Department of Labor released a guidance memorandum regarding employers’ policies on reporting workplace injuries and illnesses, and further outlined the prohibitions on retaliating for such reporting. In May 2016, OSHA published a final rule requiring employers to have in place reasonable procedures for reporting workplace injuries or illnesses and prohibiting employers from retaliating against employees who make such...
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The EEOC Identifies New Enforcement Priorities

Clifford Geiger
Clifford Geiger
10/20/2016
The EEOC takes a targeted approach to enforcement.  This enables EEOC staff focus more of their attention and the agency’s resources on a common set of priorities, presumably with more success and change for the better.  The EEOC tells everyone what types of cases have its attention and where enforcement efforts will be focused. On October 17, 2016, the EEOC approved a new strategic enforcement plan for the Fiscal Years 2017 through 2021.  The...
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Avoid Discrimination in the Form I-9 Process

Clifford Geiger
Clifford Geiger
10/20/2016
Employers must complete a Form I-9 for each new employee hired.  The purpose of the Form I-9 is to document that an employer has verified an employee’s identity and eligibility to work in the United States.  To complete the Form I-9 process, new employees may produce what is known as a “List A” document to establish their identity and work authorization.  These documents include a U.S. Passport for U.S. citizens, while non-citizens may...
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New EEOC Pay Reporting Requirements Begin Next Year

Bernadette Hunton
Bernadette Hunton
10/04/2016
On September 29, the EEOC finalized a revised pay data form  that employers and federal contractors with 100 or more employees will be required to submit on an annual basis beginning March 31, 2018, based on data collected for 2017.  Private employers with more than 100 employees and federal contractors with more than 50 employees have long been required to report employee race, ethnicity and sex to the EEOC based on 10 different job categories. ...
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DOL Publishes Final Rule On Paid Sick Leave

Randi Klein Hyatt
Randi Klein Hyatt
09/30/2016
On September 29, the Department of Labor (DOL) announced its Final Rule extending paid sick leave benefits to employees of certain federal contractors and subcontractors, and which essentially implements Executive Order 13706 from September 2015.  Here are some of the main features: Employers: The Final Rule will apply to any new contract (defined as new and replacement contracts entered into on or after January 1, 2017).  Contracts and all...
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Wells Fargo: Together We'll Go Far... Into The Abyss of Audit Hell

Randi Klein Hyatt
Randi Klein Hyatt
09/28/2016
Unless you are a contestant who just returned from participating in the 33rd season of Survivor: Millenials v. Gen X (yes, I still watch this show -- Every. Single. Episode.), you have undoubtedly heard about the Wells Fargo credit card scandal.  Nearly 5300 employees were fired after it was uncovered that millions and millions of credit card accounts were fraudulently opened without customer permission because of intense corporate pressure to meet...
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OSHA Issues Whistleblower Settlement Guidance

Randi Klein Hyatt
Randi Klein Hyatt
09/20/2016
On September 15, 2016, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration issued new guidance on proposed whistleblower settlements.  The new guidance, which can be found here and here, makes clear that language that contravenes public policy and statutory protections cannot be included in any whistleblower settlement agreement between a complainant and an employer. Among other things, OSHA will not approve language that prohibits an employee from...
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Court Rules Against EEOC On Transgender Discrimination Claim

On August 18, 2016, a federal district court ruled that a Michigan funeral home did not violate Title VII by firing a transgender employee, who was transitioning from male to female, because the employee intended to “dress as a woman” at work.  EEOC v. R.G. & G.R. Funeral Homes, Inc., E.D. Mich., No. 14-13710, 8/18/16 The U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan ruled the funeral home was entitled to a religious exemption...
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EEOC Rules That "Don't Tread On Me" Hat Might Be Racially Offensive

According to an article in the Washington Post, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has ruled that an employee may create a racially hostile work environment by wearing a hat depicting the "Gasden Flag" (a coiled rattlesnake and the phrase "Don't Tread On Me").  Sheldon D. v. Brennan, 2016 WL 3361228. The Gasden Flag, which gained recent popularity as a symbol of the Tea Party movement, has its origins in the American Revolution, when it was...
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