Monday, November 17, 2014

That is SO last week

Last week, as America recognized Veterans’ Day, a recent report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics was cause for modest celebration.  The unemployment rate among veterans dropped 2.4 percentage points in one year, to an overall rate of 4.5%.  Despite this improvement, the unemployment rate for post-9/11 veterans is still much higher than the general population.
Initiatives like Joining Forces have successfully urged companies – including Walmart and Starbucks – to focus efforts on hiring veterans.  In addition, some industries  have pledged to increase outreach to veteran populations.  These efforts coincide with increased attention to veteran hiring by the OFCCP, including its requirements that federal contractors’ affirmative action plans include veteran hiring benchmarks.
In other developments:
  • The New York Times outlined the reasons why companies should continue to keep a vigilant eye on the gender wage gap.
  • Sexual harassment resulted in the termination of the director of Yale’s Cardiovascular Research Center.
  • BuzzFeed covered the debate among LGBT groups on the scope of protection under Title VII discrimination.
  • Mental Floss covered the various maternity leave laws around the world. 
  • Leaders at the NLRB and EEOC warned employers about using social media in recruiting efforts.
  • Michael VanDervort asserted that HR must be on guard to protect employee data.
  • Wearables are quickly becoming a part of an “always on” workplace culture according to Fortune.
  • The Guardian reported on the risks that federal employees pose, describing them as the weak link in protecting government data. 
Wage and Hour
  • 2,000 current and former exotic dancers were awarded $10 million in back wages following a court’s finding that they should have been classified as employees and not independent contractors.
  • The distinction between employees and independent contractors continues to be in the news as Handy, a startup that allows customers to order household help through an app, became the latest company to be targeted by a workers’ class action.
Posted by: Kate Bischoff

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