Monday, January 26, 2015

That is SO last week

In last week’s State of the Union address, President Obama announced several new initiatives that employment lawyers expected:  increased minimum wage, paid sick and maternity leave, and more emphasis on equal pay for equal work.  While all employers should evaluate their pay practices to ensure compliance with already existing pay equity laws, those employers who pay minimum wage or do not confer paid leave benefits will need to watch Washington closely in the coming months, even though many predict that the President’s initiatives will fall flat with the Republican Congress.

Several states have already extended paid sick leave benefits and have raised the minimum wage, while others are contemplating these measures. Stay tuned.

In other developments: 

  • McDonald’s was sued for racial bias in a suit that included both the franchisee and franchisor under the joint-employer standard.
  • One law firm is learning the difficult lesson that what happens after a work holiday party can create liability for the employer.
  • Corporate Counsel gave advice on how to keep up with the EEOC in 2015.
  • The Connecticut Employment Law Blog covered how the “but-for” retaliation standard meant a win for an employer.
  • Jessica Miller-Merrell discussed how affirmative action is not a synonym for diversity.
  • Jon Hyman covered the EEOC’s workplace harassment meeting, which included a presentation on how new technology interacts with old laws.
  • The HR Bartender explained what HR needs to know about the internet of things.
  • The messaging app Memo is keeping some employers up at night and initiating lawsuits.
  • The Phoenix Sun discussed the risks and rewards of wearables in the workplace.
  • Mashable listed the worst passwords of 2014, including trustno1 and letmein.
Wage and Hour
  • 42,000 employees of TGI Friday's won conditional certification in a class action alleging the restaurant failed to pay “side work."
  • Wisconsin joined many other states in partnering with the U.S. Department of Labor to combat worker misclassification.

Posted by: Kate Bischoff 

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