The Administrative Task Force plays a critical role in keeping our OSHA practice current and vibrant. We follow developments daily and we work together to analyze the impact that proposed and actual changes will have on the law in general and specifically on our client’s industries. Employers today face an unprecedented range of workplace safety and OSHA legal issues as government increases worker safety and health regulation and demands meticulous reviews by its OSHA inspection force.
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Background Check Vendors Beware: the CFPB’s Authority to Enforce the FCRA Applies to You Too
On November 22, 2019, the federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) filed a complaint in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York against Sterling Infosystems, Inc. (“Sterling”) regarding allegations that it violated the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) in providing criminal background checks to employers. Sterling is a “consumer reporting agency” as defined by the FCRA, which provides background check results to employers when requested. The CFPB is an independent federal agency tasked with regulating and enforcing a host of consumer protection and financial protection statutes, including the FCRA.
Continue Reading Background Check Vendors Beware: the CFPB’s Authority to Enforce the FCRA Applies to You Too
Government Shutdown Data Shows Impact On Labor And Employment Law Enforcement
The government shutdown may have ended six weeks ago, but its impact may be felt for months to come. The Office of Management and Budget recently released a report entitled “Impacts and Costs of the October 2013 Federal Government Shutdown,” which details the costs of the government shutdown and the impact it had on government workers, which in turn impacts the private sector workplace as well.
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EEOC and Industry Leaders Convene to Focus on Harassment Prevention
In the wake of the #MeToo movement, the EEOC reconvened its task force on sexual harassment in June 2018. Most recently, in a continued effort to focus on leading harassment prevention efforts, the EEOC organized the “Industry Leaders Roundtable Discussion on Harassment Prevention.” On March 20, 2019, the EEOC held a roundtable discussion with various industry leaders to strategize regarding effective harassment prevention efforts and to “inform strategies for the next generation of issues flowing” from the EEOC’s task force reports and the #MeToo movement. Top tier representatives from national associations of homebuilders, manufacturers, human resources, retailers, hospitality providers and others attended and offered their perspectives.
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New Guidance Requires Federal Contractors to Have Employees Vaccinated by December 8th
On September 24, 2021, the Safer Federal Workforce Task Force (“Task Force”) issued written Guidance to implement Executive Order 14042 (“Ensuring Adequate COVID Safety Protocols for Federal Contractors”), which was signed by President Biden on September 9, 2021. The Guidance is a key component of President Biden’s larger “Path Out of the Pandemic: COVID-19 Action Plan.”
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New York City Introduces Bill to Regulate the Use of AI in Employment Decisions
With the age of artificial intelligence (AI) unfolding, products aimed at automating the recruiting and hiring process are hitting the market with increasing frequency.
Companies have been utilizing AI for tasks such as screening resumes, and even interviewing candidates and assessing whether they will be successful employees. These automated tools range from algorithms that “weed through” resumes to personality assessments and biometric analyses that employ AI to analyze a candidate’s facial expressions, body language, voices, and inflections in video interviews.
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EEOC Report Profiles Its “Vigorous” Efforts to Combat Workplace Harassment
The EEOC recently released a report highlighting the Commission’s efforts to combat sexual harassment in the past year. The report, which includes preliminary data for the fiscal year ending on September 30, 2018, illustrates that the Commission has been, in the EEOC’s words, “vigorously enforcing the law” in the wake of the #MeToo movement.
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EEOC Seeks to Capitalize on #MeToo Movement to Combat Harassment
The #MeToo movement has galvanized many into taking action to fight workplace harassment. Since the movement began in the fall of last year, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)—tasked with enforcing laws prohibiting sexual harassment—has indicated it has seen an uptick in the amount of traffic to its website. But, it also indicated this increase in website visitors has not translated into an increase in formal complaints to the EEOC filed by employees against their employers. Still, the EEOC has carried the torch of the #MeToo movement, signaling that the lack of an increase in claims will not stop the agency from vigorously enforcing anti-harassment laws.
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ABA Resolution 302: What the American Bar Association’s Position on Harassment Means to Employers
On February 5, 2018, the American Bar Association (ABA) adopted Resolution 302, which “urges all employers, and specifically all employers in the legal profession, to adopt and enforce policies and procedures that prohibit, prevent, and promptly redress harassment and retaliation based on sex, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, and the intersectionality of sex with race and/or ethnicity.”
Resolution 302 was unanimously passed by voice vote of the ABA’s House of Delegates, the 601-member governing body of the country’s largest legal association, after further edits by employment lawyer Mark Schickman to strengthen its language.
In the #MeToo era, Resolution 302 is a reminder to all employers of harassment policy best practices, and should be of particular interest to employers in the legal industry. Continue Reading ABA Resolution 302: What the American Bar Association’s Position on Harassment Means to Employers
Employers Beware: Psychiatry’s Latest Diagnostic Manual (DSM-5) Creates New Mental Disorders, Expands Others
For 60 years psychiatrists and other mental health professionals have been using the American Psychiatric Association’s “Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders” (DSM) as the “bible” for diagnosing mental diseases and disorders. Health and disability insurance providers use the DSM in deciding what conditions and treatments to cover, as do government agencies in determining eligibility for benefits and services. These and other factors make the DSM an unusually powerful document.
The latest DSM revision (the DSM-5) is set for release later this month. It creates several new mental disorders and broadens the definition of a number of existing ones. These changes will affect employers in a variety of ways, from expanded protection under the ADA and FMLA to increased benefit costs.
Continue Reading Employers Beware: Psychiatry’s Latest Diagnostic Manual (DSM-5) Creates New Mental Disorders, Expands Others