Showing 8 posts in Legislation.

U.S. House Seeks Drastic Revision of Labor Law with Protect the Right to Organize Act of 2021

In a Hinshaw Insights for Employers Alert, we consider the drastic revisions to the National Labor Relations Act and federal labor policy contemplated by the Protect the Right to Organize Act of 2021. The bill was passed with little fanfare by the U.S. House of Representatives last month.

Read the full alert

Amendments to Illinois Law Make Using Criminal Convictions in Employment Decisions a Civil Rights Violation, Outlines New Equal Pay Reporting Requirements

Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker signed SB 1480 into law on March 23, 2021. Effective immediately, the law significantly amends the Illinois Human Rights Act (IHRA), Illinois Equal Pay Act (IEPA), and the Illinois Business Corporation Act. The amendments affect employers' ability to use criminal conviction records in employment decisions and imposes new reporting requirements regarding pay equity. More ›

Hair Today…Discrimination Tomorrow? California and New York Adopt Hair Style Protections, Others Surely to Follow

On July 3, 2019, California Governor Gavin Newsom approved Senate Bill No. 188 providing legal protection from discrimination in the workplace and in public schools for natural and protective hairstyles historically worn by black people and people of color. This bill expanded the scope of what is considered a protected race category under the California Fair Employment and Housing Act to include traits "historically associated with race, including, but not limited to, hair texture and protective hairstyles." Following California's lead, New York then became the second state to ban discrimination based on natural hairstyles on July 12, 2019, when Governor Andrew Cuomo signed into law S.6209A/A.7797A, which amends the Human Rights Law and Dignity for All Students Act. There is now proposed legislation in New Jersey as well, modeled after Senate Bill No. 188. This means employers in other states should take a hard look at their workplace hair and grooming policies to avoid discrimination actions. More ›

Hair today...discrimination case tomorrow?

California is well on its way to unanimously becoming the first state to ban discrimination in schools and workplaces based on hair/hairstyles, hair textures, and protective hairstyles such as twists, braids, updos, and wigs. The CROWN (Create a Respectful and Open Workplace for Natural Hair) Act would prohibit employers and schools from enforcing discriminatory grooming, hair keeping policies, or dress codes that could disproportionately affect people of color. Going forward, California employers should look at their related polices to ensure they are non-discriminatory and do not specifically target hairstyles or hair textures of people of color. More ›

New California Law Imposes Liability on Companies Where Labor Contractors fail to pay Wages or Provide Workers’ Compensation Insurance

On Sunday, September 28, 2014, California Governor Jerry Brown signed into law AB 1897 (D-Hernandez), which imposes liability on companies who use subcontracted temporary labor if the temp company fails to pay wages or provide valid workers’ compensation coverage. The bill applies where a temp company supplies workers to a client employer to perform labor within the client employer’s usual course of business. More ›

Employers’ Ability to Collect Attorney’s fees in wage Cases Restricted by new Bill

On August 26, 2013, California Governor Jerry Brown signed Senate Bill 462 into law, making it harder for employers to obtain attorney’s fees in certain employment wage claim cases.

Prior to the passage of SB 462, section 218.5 of the California Labor Code required a court in any action brought for the nonpayment of wages, fringe benefits, or health and welfare pension fund contributions, to award reasonable attorney’s fees and costs to the prevailing party who requests such fees and costs at the outset of the case, regardless of whether the prevailing party was the employer or the employee. More ›

Citing "Legal Uncertainty" Caused by Recess Appointments, House GOP Members Introduce Bill to Halt All NLRB Activity

On March 13, 2013, GOP members of the House Education and the Workforce Committee introduced a bill intended to put a halt to all actions by the National Labor Relations Board pending resolution of the confusion caused by a recent D.C. Circuit ruling that found President Obama's "recess appointment" of two of the three current NLRB members unconstitutional. Citing the "legal uncertainty" facing employers in the wake of the D.C. Circuit's decision in Noel Canning v. NLRB, the bill, titled the Preventing Greater Uncertainty in Labor-Management Relations Act (H.R. 1120), would restrict the Board's authority to take any action until one of three events occurs: the U.S. Supreme Court rules on the constitutionality of the President's "recess appointments", a Board quorum is constitutionally confirmed, or the terms of the two "recess appointments" expire. More ›

Maryland: Employers Cannot Demand Applicants’/Employees’ Social Network Passwords

Maryland is the first state to pass legislation which bans employers from asking for current and prospective employees' passwords to social media sites. The legislation passed the General Assembly and is now waiting to be signed by the Governor. The demand for such legislation is not limited to Maryland. Senators from New York and Connecticut have asked the Department of Justice and the EEOC to investigate this particular practice, which has become more and more common with employers of late. Illinois and California presently have similar legislation pending.

Conducting checks into employees' and prospective employees' backgrounds is very common, yet can be very risky. Before delving into your applicants'/employees' social networking backgrounds, consult with counsel to determine whether your methods are appropriate and compliant with local, state, and federal law.