Law and the Workplace

Category Archives: Workplace Policies and Procedures

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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

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

Federal Judge Blocks Contractor Vaccine Mandate Nationwide

UPDATE (01/04): On December 22, a Federal judge in Florida became the latest judge to issue a preliminary injunction halting enforcement of the federal contractor and subcontractor vaccine mandate requirements.  The decision in State of Florida v. Nelson, et al. blocks enforcement only in Florida, but Judge R. Stan Baker’s order (discussed below) in State … Continue Reading

Contractor Vaccine Mandate Blocked In 3 States By Federal Judge

On November 30, 2021, a federal judge issued a preliminary injunction halting enforcement of the federal contractor and subcontractor vaccine mandate requirements issued by the Safer Federal Workforce Task Force in response to President Biden’s Executive Order 14042, Ensuring Adequate COVID Safety Protocols for Federal Contractors.  The mandate requires covered contractor employees to be fully … Continue Reading

EEOC Prepares to Tackle Artificial Intelligence and Algorithmic Bias

On October 28, 2021, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) Chair Charlotte A. Burrows announced that the agency is launching an initiative to ensure that artificial intelligence (“AI”) used at all stages of the employment cycle comply with federal anti-discrimination laws.  The EEOC also issued a press release on that same day outlining the agency’s plans … Continue Reading

Reminder: Illinois Restrictive Covenant Law Takes Effect on January 1, 2022

As we previously reported, a new amendment to the Illinois Freedom to Work Act (820 ILCS § 90) regarding the use of non-competition and non-solicitation restrictive covenants for Illinois employees will take effect on January 1, 2022. The law imposes certain restrictions on the use of restrictive covenants that are entered into after January 1, … Continue Reading

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

New York Governor Kathy Hocul 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

OSHA Releases Emergency Temporary Standard Requiring Mandatory Vaccination or Weekly Testing for Employers with 100 or More Employees

UPDATE: On January 13, 2022, the U.S. Supreme Court granted applications to stay OSHA’s Emergency Temporary Standard pending review on the merits by the Sixth Circuit, and if writs of certiorari are subsequently sought to the U.S. Supreme Court, pending the Court’s disposition of such writs.  Click here to read more about the Court’s decision.  On … 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 Federal Vaccine Rule:  Wage and Hour Implications

UPDATE: On January 13, 2022, the U.S. Supreme Court granted applications to stay OSHA’s Emergency Temporary Standard pending review on the merits by the Sixth Circuit, and if writs of certiorari are subsequently sought to the U.S. Supreme Court, pending the Court’s disposition of such writs.  Click here to read more about the Court’s decision.  On … Continue Reading

Designation of COVID-19 Under New York HERO Act Extended Once Again

***UPDATE: On January 15, 2022, the New York State Commissioner of Health continued the designation of COVID-19 as a “highly contagious communicable disease” pursuant to the HERO Act until February 15, 2022. According to the designation, on February 15, the Commissioner “will review the level of transmission of COVID-19 in New York State and determine … Continue Reading

New York State to Require Certain Private Employers to Automatically Enroll Employees in State Retirement Program

New York Governor Kathy Hochul has signed into law a bill that will require certain private employers in the state to automatically enroll their employees in a state-administered retirement savings plan if the employer does not offer its own qualified retirement plan.  The law took effect immediately upon signing on October 21, 2021, though employers … Continue Reading

Texas Governor Issues Executive Order Aimed at Prohibiting Vaccine Mandates for Private Employers

Texas Governor Greg Abbott has issued an Executive Order (GA-40) prohibiting the enforcement of COVID-19 vaccine mandates in Texas against employees and customers of private businesses who object on certain bases, including “personal conscience.” Effective immediately, GA-40 states: “No entity in Texas can compel receipt of a COVID-19 vaccine by any individual, including an employee … Continue Reading

D.C. Paid Leave Program Amended to Expand Benefits

Seal of the District of ColumbiaSignificant changes have arrived for paid medical, parental, and family care leave in Washington, D.C following the recent enactment of the Universal Paid Leave Emergency Amendment Act of 2021 (“PLEAA”).  Effective October 1, 2021 (with a minor exception for expanded personal medical leave, discussed below), the PLEAA amends the D.C. Universal Paid Leave Amendment Act of … Continue Reading

“A Shifting Landscape of Workplace Challenges”

Proskauer’s Steven J. Pearlman will join a webinar on October 19 with Carol Miaskoff—Legal Counsel to the EEOC—and Elizabeth Owens Bille of EverFi, titled “A Shifting Landscape of Workplace Challenges.” Steven will focus on how the pandemic has impacted the employment law landscape, exploring ways to prevent harassment and discrimination in the virtual and hybrid workplace, … Continue Reading

New York State Issues Updated Model Workplace Safety Plans and FAQ Guidance Under the HERO Act

***UPDATE: On September 30, 2021, the New York State Department of Labor released updated FAQs regarding the HERO Act. Our blog post on this development is available here.*** On September 23, 2021, New York State issued updated model airborne infectious disease exposure prevention plans for employer use pursuant to the HERO Act. As we previously … Continue Reading

Louisiana Enacts Workplace Protections for Employees Disabled Due to Pregnancy and Limits the Use of Criminal Background Checks in Hiring

Louisiana employers should be aware of two new laws which went into effect on August 1, 2021.  The first, Act 393, provides for reasonable accommodations of employees who become temporarily disabled due to certain pregnancy-related medical conditions.  It amends Louisiana Revised Statutes §§ 23:341 and 23:342 and enacts § 23:341.1, which apply to employers who … 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

Illinois Governor Signs Restrictive Covenant Bill Into Law

On August 13, 2021, Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker signed into law an amendment to the Illinois Freedom to Work Act (820 ILCS § 90), which imposes restrictions on the use of non-competition and non-solicitation (employee and customer) restrictive covenants for Illinois employees. The law takes effect on January 1, 2022, and only applies to restrictive covenants … Continue Reading

Chicago Expands Paid Sick Leave Ordinance

Effective August 1, 2021, the City of Chicago’s Minimum Wage and Paid Sick Leave Ordinance was amended to provide for additional uses of paid sick leave for eligible employees.  Under the Amended Ordinance, an employee who works at least 80 hours for an employer within any 120-day period while physically present within the geographic boundaries … Continue Reading

NYC Commission on Human Rights Issues Updated Enforcement Guidance on Consideration of Criminal History in Hiring and Employment

The New York City Commission on Human Rights (the “Commission”) has issued updated legal enforcement guidance on the NYC Fair Chance Act (“FCA”) and employers’ consideration of criminal history in hiring and during employment. The updated guidance, which does not have the force of law but which provides significant insight into the Commission’s interpretation of … Continue Reading

Employee Disability and Cannabis Oil Protections Set to Take Effect in Virginia

Quick Hit: Two new laws in Virginia providing disability discrimination protections and protections for medicinal use of cannabis oil for employees go into effect July 1, 2021. Key Takeaway: Virginia, once known as a jurisdiction with very few state employment laws, is quickly changing that reputation with the passage of numerous new laws since the … 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
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