Law and the Workplace
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Arielle E. Kobetz

Arielle Kobetz is an associate in the Labor & Employment Law Department. She assists employers in a wide range of areas, including discrimination, wage and hour, and traditional labor.

Prior to joining Proskauer, Arielle served as a law clerk at the New York City Human Resources Administration, Employment Law Unit, where she worked on a variety of employment discrimination and internal employee disciplinary issues.

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New York City to End Private Employee COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate

New York City Mayor Eric Adams has announced that the City’s private employee COVID-19 vaccine mandate will be lifted effective November 1, 2022. As we previously reported, the NYC mandate requires all private workers in New York City who perform in-person work or interact with the public to show proof they have received at least … Continue Reading

New York State’s Workplace Sexual Harassment Complaint Hotline is Live

On July 19, 2022, New York State Governor Kathy Hochul announced the launch of the state’s confidential hotline for complaints of workplace sexual harassment. As we previously reported, S812A (enacted in March 2022) establishes a toll-free confidential hotline, administered by the New York State Department of Human Rights (NYSDHR), “to provide individuals with complaints of workplace … Continue Reading

New York State Legislature Approves Law That Prohibits No Fault Attendance Policies

The New York State legislature recently passed a bill (Senate Bill S1958A) that, if and when enacted into law, would amend the New York Labor Law to clarify that employers who maintain “no fault” or absence control policies may not discipline employees for taking absences that are protected under federal, state, or local law. Under … Continue Reading

Massachusetts COVID-19 Emergency Paid Sick Leave Program to End March 15, 2022

The Massachusetts Department of Unemployment Insurance has announced that the Massachusetts COVID-19 Emergency Paid Sick Leave (“MEPSL”) will expire on March 15, 2022, and employers have until April 29, 2022 to file their applications for reimbursements. This means employees may continue to take leave under the program through March 15th, but employers then have until … Continue Reading

DC Enacts Vaccine Mandate For Certain Indoor Establishments

***UPDATE: beginning February 15, 2022, indoor venues will no longer be required to verify that patrons are vaccinated (though businesses may choose to keep vaccination requirements in place). Additional information is available here.*** Starting January 15, 2022, DC will require the following establishments to verify that their guests, visitors and consumers ages 12 and older … Continue Reading

Philadelphia Enacts Ordinance to Prohibit Pre-Employment Marijuana Testing

Effective January 1, 2022, Phila. Code § 9-5500 now prohibits Philadelphia employers from requiring job applicants to submit to pre-employment drug tests for marijuana use. Specifically, the ordinance makes it an unlawful employment practice for an employer, labor organization, or employment agency (or agent thereof) to require prospective employees to submit to testing for the … Continue Reading

More Whiplash — DC Brings Back Mask Mandate and Encourages Vaccine Mandates

Effective December 21, 2021, through at least January 31, 2022, DC law requires that all individuals wear masks in indoor public spaces, regardless of vaccination status. As we previously reported, just last month DC Mayor Muriel Bowser significantly scaled back the District’s indoor mask mandate, which had required masks in all indoor public places since … Continue Reading

New York City Enacts Law to Regulate Use of Automated Hiring Tools

Over the past decade many employers have adopted Artificial Intelligence driven tools to automate various aspects of the workplace, including the recruiting and hiring process.  These tools have come under scrutiny by federal, state and local governments based on research that has suggested the possibility of bias or discrimination arising from the widespread use of … Continue Reading

DC Enacts (Another) COVID-19 Emergency Leave Law

***UPDATE: the Emergency Act has been extended through at least May 4, 2022.*** DC Mayor Muriel Bowser signed into law the COVID Vaccination Leave Emergency Amendment Act of 2021 (“Emergency Act”), which requires employers to provide paid leave to employees and their children for time spent obtaining and, if needed, recovering from side effects of … Continue Reading

DC Announces End to Indoor Mask Mandate

DC Mayor Muriel Bowser announced that on November 22, 2021, the District’s indoor mask mandate – one of, if not the most restrictive mask mandate – will be significantly scaled back. The current mandate, which went into effect on July 31, 2021, requires masks in all indoor public places for all individuals over age two, … Continue Reading

New York State Enacts Phone, Email, and Internet Monitoring Notice Law for Private Employers

New York Governor Kathy Hochul has signed into law a bill that will require employers to provide notice to employees of electronic monitoring of telephone, email, and internet access and usage. The law, which takes effect on May 7, 2022, will require all private employers, regardless of size, with a place of business in New … Continue Reading

New York Paid Family Leave Law Amended to Allow Leave to Care for Siblings

New York Governor Kathy Hochul signed into law an amendment to the New York Paid Family Leave Law (NYPFLL), which will allow employees to take leave to care for siblings with a serious health condition. In effect since 2018, the NYPFLL provides a phased-in system of paid, job protected leave for eligible employees: (i) to … Continue Reading

New York State Issues Updated Guidance On HERO Act

On September 30, 2021, the New York State Department of Labor (“NYSDOL”) released an updated set of frequently asked questions on the HERO Act. As we previously reported, the HERO Act requires all employers in New York to implement certain safety standards and adopt a prevention plan to protect against the spread of airborne infectious … Continue Reading

OSHA To Issue Emergency Temporary Standard Requiring Large Employers to Mandate Vaccination or Weekly Testing for Employees

On September 9, 2021, the Biden Administration announced that the Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is developing an Emergency Temporary Standard that will require all employers with 100 or more employees to ensure their workforce is fully vaccinated or require unvaccinated workers to provide a negative COVID-19 test result at least … Continue Reading

New York State Issues HERO Act Prevention Standard and Model Plans

On July 6, 2021, the New York State Department of Labor published multiple model documents related to the implementation of the New York HERO Act (the “Act”), which, as we previous reported, requires all employers in New York to adopt a prevention plan to protect against the spread of airborne infectious diseases in the workplace. … Continue Reading

New York State Passes Significant Amendments to the HERO Act

***UPDATE: on June 11, 2021, Governor Cuomo signed the HERO Act amendments into law. As discussed below, section 1 of the Act takes effect on July 5, 2021, though employers are not required to adopt an airborne infectious disease exposure prevention plan until the state issues its model. Section 2 (permitting the creation of a … Continue Reading

New York State Passes Bill to Mandate COVID-19 Safety Standards in the Workplace

***UPDATE: Governor Cuomo signed the HERO Act into law on Wednesday, May 5, 2021. The Act is currently scheduled to take effect on June 4, 2021; however, section two of the Act, which permits the creation of a joint employer-employee workplace health and safety committee (as discussed below), takes effect on November 1, 2021. On … Continue Reading

OSHA Issues Guidance on Employer Recording Obligations Regarding Mandatory Vaccination Programs

***UPDATE: On May 21, 2021, OSHA published a new FAQ establishing that employers do not need to record adverse reactions from COVID-19 vaccines on their OSHA 300 Logs, at least through May of 2022.  The enforcement position applies regardless of whether an employer requires, recommends, or incentivizes employees to receive the vaccine. On April 20, … Continue Reading

New York State Legalizes Recreational Adult Use of Marijuana

On March 31, 2021, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo signed into law the New York State Cannabis/Marijuana Regulation & Taxation Act, which legalized the use of recreational marijuana for individuals ages 21 and older. Among other things, the Act establishes a Cannabis Control Board and Office of Cannabis Management that will be responsible for regulating … Continue Reading

New York State Issues Guidance on COVID-19 Vaccine Leave Law

The New York State Department of Labor (“NYSDOL”) has issued guidance on the State’s recently enacted COVID-19 vaccine leave law, which went into effect on March 12, 2021.  As we previously reported, the law requires employers to provide employees with “a sufficient period of time, not to exceed four hours” per dose to be vaccinated … Continue Reading

New York State Passes Bill Granting Employees Paid Time Off for COVID-19 Vaccinations

***UPDATE: Governor Cuomo signed this bill into law on Friday, March 12. The law takes effect immediately.*** The New York state legislature passed Bill S2588A/A3354B, which would amend the New York Labor Law to grant employees paid leave time for the COVID-19 vaccination.  Below is a brief summary of what New York employers need to … Continue Reading

New York Court Dismisses Amazon Workers’ COVID-19 Health and Safety Claims

*** UPDATE: On November 24, 2020, the Plaintiffs in Palmer, et al. v. Amazon.Com, Inc., et al. filed a notice of appeal. The Plaintiffs appealed Judge Cogan’s order dismissing the case to the Second Circuit. We will continue to monitor this case and provide updates. *** On November 2, 2020, the Eastern District of New … Continue Reading
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