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OSHA Activates OnLine Whistleblower Complaint Form

[December 5, 2013]

Whistleblowers covered by one of 22 statutes administered by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration will now be able to file complaints online. The online form will provide workers who have been retaliated against an additional way to reach out for OSHA assistance online.

The new online form is located here: Online OSHA Complaint.

OSHA Proposes New Data Collection Requirements

[November 7, 2013]

Today, the federal Organizational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) published its 117 page long proposal to collect more information from employers across the country. These data would have to be submitted electronically. Get a copy of the PDF version of the proposal at: OSHA's Proposal for New Data Submissions by Employers.

California Bans Some Criminal Background Checks

[October 14, 2013]

California Governor Jerry Brown signed into law AB218 which becomes effective on July 1, 2014. It bans public agencies from asking for criminal conviction history on job applications. Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Hawaii and Minnesota currently have bans on both public and private employers asking for criminal background information.

Vice President Biden Announces New OFCCP Regulations for Disabled and Veterans AAPs

[August 27, 2013]

Vice President Joe Biden today announced that the OFCCP will soon publish its new regulations for veterans and disabled affirmative action plans. He said they will require federal contractors to target hiring 7% disabled and 8% veterans. Current information about the changes and when the new rules will be published in the Federal Register can be obtained on the OFCCP web site at Veterans Rule and Disabled Rule. He said the new rules will become effective 180 days following publication in the Federal Register.

NLRB Says Employees Can Use Company Logo in Social Media

[August 5, 2013]

According to an article in HRMorning.com, the National Labor Relations Board has ruled that employees are entitld to use their company logo in social media posts.

Go to the article here.

10 Jobs Employers Can't Fill

[July 22, 2013]

In an article by Chad Brooks, Fox News Business News Contributor, employers are having greatest trouble recruiting people for these 10 jobs:

  • Sales representative
  • Machine operator/assembler/production worker
  • Nurse
  • Truck driver
  • Software developer
  • Engineer
  • Marketing professional
  • Accountant
  • Mechanic
  • IT manager/network administrator

Click Here to See the Entire Article

Supreme Court Hits Middle Ground in University Admissions Affirmative Action

[June 24, 2013]

In a 7-1 majority led by Justice Anthony Kennedy, the U.S. Supreme Court today ruled that a University must apply "strict strutiny" if it wants to apply racial categories or classifications to its student admissions. "Strict scrutiny does not permit a court to accept a school's assertion that its admissions process uses race in a permissible way without closely examining how the process works in practice."

U.S. Supreme Court Opinion - Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin

Supreme Court Makes Proving Job Bias Even Harder

[June 24, 2013]

In a 5-4 majority led by Justice Samuel Alito Jr., the U.S. Supreme Court today ruled that an employee is a supervisor when the employer has empowered that person "to take tangible employment actions against the victim." Negative employment decisions can affect an employee's hiring, firing, training selection, and promotion eligibility among other things. It rejected the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission's (EEOC) broader definition which included, "someone who exercises significant direction over another's work." We are left with "tangible employment action" and not "significant direction."

U.S. Supreme Court Opinion - Vance v. Ball State University

New Psychiatry Diagnostic Manual Expands Mental Disability Categories

[May 23, 2013] "Hunton Employment and Labor Perspectives" broke the news that the American Psychiatric Association will issue a newly updated version of its "Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM)." 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. Employers may well be impacted with a new set of mental disabilities that the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) will consider as covered disabilities under the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Read the Article Here

DC Court Strikes Down NLRB Poster Rule

[May 7, 2013] The DC Court of Appeals has strick down the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) rule requiring all employers in the country to display a poster alerting workers to their rights under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA).

Justice Randolph, Senior Circuit Judge wrote, "...given the Act's language and structure are manifestly remedial, I do not believe the Congress intended to authorize a regulation so aggressively prophylactic as the posting rule."

See the entire opinion here.

Colorado Prohibits Credit Checks

[May 7, 2013] Colorado has enacted a law that prohibits employers from performing a credit history or credit check for hiring or other employment purposes. Called the Employment Opportunity Act (Senate Bill 18) the law applies to private sector employers with four or more employees. Exempted are banks and other financial institutions, and some other specific circumstances. Penalties of up to $2,500 can be awarded to aggrieved individuals.

Colorado Employment Opportunity Act

Colorado Civil Union Act Effective May 1, 2013

[April 23, 2013] On May 1, 2013, the new Colorado Civil Union Act (SB 11) will become effective. The new law gives civil union partners the same employment protections and benefits automatically available to married employees. Included are rights and benefits related to workers' compensation, unemployment, family leave, life, health, and property insurance, and other benefits. The law also protects these workers from discriminatory practices in employment and from retaliation for asserting their rights. While most of the provisions become effective in May, some provisions related to health and life insurance policies become effective January 1, 2014.

Colorado Civil Union Act (SB 11)

District of Columbia Workplace Fraud Act

[April 21, 2013] Much has been said in recent times of the need to properly use the "independent contractor" category rather than classifying people as employees. In Washington, DC the effort has resulted in a new law called the DC Workplace Fraud Act.

The new law applies to the construction industry and provides for significant civil penalties, worker lawsuits and stop work orders. It also provides for public contract debarment.

www.dcregs.dc.gov/Notice/DownLoad.aspx?NoticeID=4220778

Hospitals Subject to OFCCP Oversight as Subcontractors According to District Court

[March 30, 2013] A federal district court ruled in UPMC Braddock v. Harris, (No. 09-1210, D. D.C.) that three hospitals affiliated with the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center can be treated as subcontractors under federal regulations because they provide medical services to a health plan that has a prime contract with the federal government.

The three hospitals in question contracted with a health maintenance organization (HMO) to provide medical services to certain federal employees who were members of the HMO.

In its analysis, the court rejected all of the arguments used by the hospitals to claim they were not subject to oversight by the OFCCP.

If you are a hospital or other medical services provider, you should review your status with your attorney to determine if you need to prepare affirmative action plans for your organization. The OFCCP is expected to be very agressive in its pursuit of these newly captured subcontractor organizations.

OFCCP Executive Office Changes

[March 8, 2013] Yesterday, Patricia A. Shiu, National Director of the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) announced three changes in the agency's executive ranks. Tom Dowd has been named Deputy Director, Dr. Richard Fischer has been appointed as the Director of Testing Operations and Dr. Kristen Monaco has been hired to act as the agency's Labor Economist.

OFCCP Executive Office - Washington, DC

New I-9 Form Released Today

[March 8, 2013] Today a new version of the Form I-9 was released by the U.S. Customs and Immigration Service (USCIS). The "Handbook for Employers Guidance for Completing the Form I-9 (M-274)" is in the process of being updated to correspond to the new form and will be released next week. Please follow the instructions on the new form until the Handbook is updated. Employers have until May 7, 2013 before they will be penalized for not using the new version of the form. For more information go to Form I-9 Central.

BE SURE TO POST OSHA FORM 300A

[February 1, 2013] Employers with more than 10 employees, that have not been exempted based on a low hazard level, must post Form 300A, the Summary of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses, in a workplace common area annually from February 1 to April 30 each year.

Click Here for the Form 300A & Instructions

COUNT OF STATES WITH NEW POSTER REQUIREMENTS INCREASES

[January 22, 2013] The number of states with compulsory labor law compliance poster changes has continued to grow. Now there are 15 states on the list. Is yours one of them?

Click here to see the list of states with 2013 changes.

DEPARTMENT OF LABOR SECRETARY HILDA L. SOLIS RESIGNS

[January 9, 2013] This afternoon, Secretary Hilda L. Solis sent her resignation letter to President Obama, ending her service in the cabinet-level post. She had worked in the job for nearly the entire first term of the Obama Administration.

Click here to read the DOL announcement.

NEW CALIFORNIA PREGNANCY REGULATIONS EFFECTIVE THIS MONTH

[December 6, 2012] On December 30, 2012 the new California regulations on pregnancy discrimination become effective. There are some key changes in the new rules, including changes in definitions for "four months," "disabled by pregnancy," "perceived pregnancy," and changes to Notices "A" and "B." For all the details go to: California Pregnancy Regulations

Free Employer Webinar on Compensation

[November 9, 2012] The EEO Academy (EEOAcademy.net) is presenting a FREE webinar for employers interested in compensation analysis. The Glass Ceiling in Compensation Analysis: How to identify it and what to do about it. Will be held on December 11, 2012 from 9:30AM - 11:00AM PST. The presentation will be made by Jim Higgins, Ed.D., expert in compensation analysis. To register go to: Webinar Registration

Employer Resources for Working With Disabled Employees

[November 2, 2012] The U.S. Department of Labor, Office of Disability Employment Policy has posted some resources to help employers understand when it may be possible to accommodate an employee to preserve a skilled individual on the payroll.

CLICK HERE for the Workplace Flexibility Toolkit.

2012 California Employment Legislation

[October 3, 2012] California's legislature has concluded its work for the year and Governor Edmund G. Brown, Jr. has signed or vetoed all the legislative pieces that were sent to him. All that had to happen by September 30th. So now, the question is, "What new laws can employers in the Golden State look forward to next year?"

2012 California Legislation

National ILG Conference August 27 to 31

[August 20, 2012] The National Industry Liaison Group (NILG) conference will be held in Kona, Hawaii from August 27 through August 31, 2012. This annual event offers federal contractors and their representatives to meet with the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP).

National ILG

OFCCP Posts New FAQs on Its Internet Applicant Recordkeeping Rule

[August 8, 2012] The U.S. Department of Labor's Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) has posted some additions to its list of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) related to its Internet Applicant Recordkeeping Rule. You will find them marked "NEW" at

FAQ Updates for Internet Applicant Rule

Plan Now for October's Disability Awareness Month

[July 30, 2012] The U.S. Department of Labor is encouraging employers to prepare special events for their workers and communities. The occassion? Disability Awareness Month. It is a national campaign that raises awareness about disability employment issues and celebrates the many and varied contributions of America's workers with disabilities.

DOL Resources for Disability Awareness Month

DOL Holds Contractors Liable for Action of SubContractors

[July 27, 2012] The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has announced it has settled actions against construction contractor Lettire Construction Corp., an industry leader in affordable housing construction. The settlement agreement calls for Lettire Construction to take affirmative steps to ensure its own and its subcontractors' future compliance, to guarantee payment for some of its subcontractors' violations as determined through administrative and court proceedings, and to guarantee payment for any future violations committed by its subcontractors on federal funded local, state and federal prevailing wage projects. Click Here to read the news release from DOL.

EEOC Posts Amicus Briefs on Its Web Site

[July 26, 2012] The Equal Employmant Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has posted its amicus briefs on its web site. Documents go back to 2000. The materials include U.S. Circuit Courts of Appeals filings with a link to U.S. Supreme Court briefs through the office of the Solicitor General. Go to www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/newsroom/release/6-20-12b.cfm

Pharmaceutical Sales Representatives

[July 18, 2012] On June 18, 2012, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its 5-4 ruling in Christopher v. SmithKline Beecham Corp., No 11-204. That decision says pharmaceutical sales representatives are exempt from overtime under the FLSA. It is not yet clear whether or not California will permit the same exemption. If it does not, then employees in the pharmaceutical sales representative category will need to be paid overtime if working in California. This is an evolving issue and one which requires you to discuss any decisions with your attorney before making changes.

Diversity Metrics

[July 18, 2012] If your organization has an interest in measuring its diversity program, you may find this article of interest. "Measurements are necessary to determine what needs doing, how to plan initiatives, and their success."

The Greater La Crosse Area Diversity Council - Metrics of Diversity

Supreme Court Publishes Opinion On Obamacare Health Law

In 2010, Congress enacted the Patient Protection and Affordable CareAct in order to increase the number of Americans covered by health insurance and decrease the cost of health care. One key provision is the individual mandate, which requires most Americans to maintain "minimum essential" health insurance coverage. Calling the requirement for mandatory individual coverage provision a "tax" on June 28, 2012 the Court said Congress acted constitutionally. Click Here to see the DC Circuit Court of Appeals Ruling.

Click Here to see the Supreme Court Opinion
193 pages PDF file (779 KB)

NLRB Poster Requirement Blocked

The DC Circuit Court of Appeals has temporarily enjoined the NLRB’s rule requiring the posting of employee rights under the National Labor Relations Act. The rule, which had been scheduled to take effect on April 30, 2012, will not take effect until the legal issues are resolved. There is no new deadline for the posting requirement at this time. Click Here to see the DC Circuit Court of Appeals Ruling.

DOL Publishes NPRM to Change FMLA Regulations

On February 12, 2012, the Wage and Hour Division of the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) published its Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) in the Federal Register regarding the Family and Medical Leave Act regulations. Public comments are due by April 16, 2012. You can get a PDF copy of the Federal Register posting at FMLA NPRM 2/12/2012.

OFCCP Publishes New Disability Regs With Numeric Targets

The Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) has published its latest recommendations for federal contractors in the area of disability employment. Part of the huge new regulation will be accomplishment of a 7 percent disability representation in employee group. Comments are due by February 7, 2012.

Extension for Comment Deadline.

Several organizations, including Congress, requested the OFCCP extend its deadline for receiving comments to the Section 503 regulation proposal for at least 90 days. On February 7, 2012, the agency announced it will extend the deadline for 14 days. The new deadline is February 21, 2012. You can see the OFCCP announcement HERE.

You can get a copy of the proposal at OFCCP Proposal in Federal Register.

If you would like to see our January 17, 2012 comments to the OFCCP regarding these proposed regulations, CLICK HERE. (54 KB PDF file)

In the mean time, Representatives John Kline and Phil Roe, of the U.S. House Committee on Education and the Workforce, sent a letter on January 27, 2012 to Department of Labor Secretary Hilda L. Solis. In it they asked for input from the DOL that would justify the legal basis for OFCCP's proposed regulatory changes. You can get a copy of that letter HERE.

Response to OMB Regarding OFCCP Scheduling Letter Changes

The Management Advantage, Inc. has submitted a response to the Office of Management and Budget's (OMB) call for comments on OFCCP's request for approval of an altered Scheduling Letter and attached Itemized Listing of data requirements. We oppose the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs' (OFCCP) attempt to collect new data files from federal contractors as part of the desk audit phase of a Compliance Evaluation.

You can get a copy of our comments HERE.

DOL Delays Filing for VETS-100/VETS-100A in 2011

The Department of Labor has announced it is experiencing "technical problems" related to its system used in collecting VETS-100 and VETS-100A report data. "Contractors will have up to 60 days from the time the system is operational to submit their report which is expect to begin on November 1, 2011 and end December 30, 2011."

Click here for the latest information from DOL.

Census Bureau Says Special EEO File Will Be Available in 3rd Quarter 2012

The U.S. Bureau of the Census has posted information on its web site that says its new compilation of the Special EEO File used for affirmative action computations will be released in Fall of 2012. It will contain the data collected in Census 2010. Geographic entities in the file will include U.S. Total, States, Counties and Core Based Statistical Areas (CBSA) a new name for what is now known as Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA). The list of 535 civilian occupational categories that will be reported for each geographical area can be found at 2010 Census Occupation Codes.

ALJ Says Hospitals Participating in Tricare are Federal Contractors Subject to OFCCP Audit

On October 18, 2010, an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) issued a ruling on OFCCP vs. Florida Hospital of Orlando. In summary, it says the hospital is subject to OFCCP jurisdiction because a Tricare contract to provide medical services to active and retired military personnel and their families constitutes a qualifying contract. If you are an acute care hospital, talk with your legal advisors about your status if you find you also have a contract for Tricare services. Should you discover that you need to implement federally compliant affirmative action plans, give us a call because we can help you meet those federal obligations.Click Here for the PDF Decision Report

New DOD-FAR Rule Protects Whistleblowing Employees of Contractors

On November 19, 2009, The U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) published final regulations giving whistleblower protections to employees of federal contractors. As of that date, DOD contractor employees are protected if they disclose to Government officials information regarding waste or mismanagement, danger to public health or safety, or violation of law related to a DOD contract.

DOD Contractor Whistleblower Rule
(PDF File, 40KB)

U.S. Supreme Court Rules on Employment Descrimination

On June 29, 2009, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its ruling on the Ricci v. DeStefano (City of New Haven). It said, among other things that employment testing results must be used if they are shown to be valid according to the Uniform Guidelines on Employee Selection Procedures.

Ricci v. DeStefano (City of New Haven)
(PDF File, 59KB)

ICE Focuses on Employers as Immigration Violators

On April 30, 2009, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Customs and Immigration Service (USCIS) issued notice that it has turned its focus on immigration enforcement toward employers who are knowingly violating the law.

Following an Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) investigation, on May 6, 2009, the owner of a Chinese restaurant in DePere, Wisconsin was sentenced in federal court to 15 months in prison for harboring illegal aliens to work at his restaurant. He was also ordered to forfeit the residence he used to harbor the illegal workers. (www.ice.gov/pi/nr/0905/090506greenbay.htm)

For a copy of the Fact Sheet go to ICE Fact Sheet on Worksite Enforcement Strategy.

New FMLA Poster Released - Mandatory to Post

On December 18, 2008, the U.S. Department of Labor released the updated poster content for the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) changes implemented in 2007 legislation. It is mandatory to post as of January 16, 2009, along with all other federal poster and notice requirements. You can order an updated All-On-One poster for your state by going to Compliance Posters. Our All-On-One posters contain both federal and state poster requirements for your state and are laminated with plastic to protect the documents and make the display look more professional.

If you simply wish to print a copy of the new poster and put it on the wall next to the other required materials, you can download a copy by clicking here. You will receive a PDF file 42.25 KB in size.

Code of Business Ethics and Conduct for Federal Contractors

On December 24, 2007, a new regulation became effective that touches all federal contractors. The new rule applies to all federal agency contracts other than what the government considers "commercial contracts." It requires all contractors to have and maintain a Code of Business Ethics and Conduct.

Contractors that have contracts valued at $5,000,000 or more which are expected to last 120 days or longer are required to prepare their Code of Business Ethics and Conduct in writing and to meet other requirements.

If the government agency has its own Fraud Hotline poster, the contractor must post that document at each work location. If the agency doesn't have its own specific Fraud Hotline poster, the contractor must post the generic poster published by the Office of the Inspector General (OIG).

Click here for a copy of the regulation. (PDF file, 85.8 KB)

California Leave Requirement for Military Spouses

On October 9, 2007, California Governor Arnold Schwarzenneger signed AB 392. Because it was designated an emergency measure, its requirements become effective immediately.

If you are an employer with 25 or more workers, you must allow an employee who is a spouse of a member of the Armed Forces, National Guard, or Reserves to take up to 10 days of unpaid leave during a "qualified leave period" when the employee's spouse is home on leave.

The state legislature approved the new requirements to support "the families of those troops currently serving in military conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan."

For a copy of the new AB 392 law in PDF format Click Here (71.60 KB, 2 pages, PDF format)

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