Tuesday, January 20, 2015

That is SO last week

As we celebrated Martin Luther King Jr. yesterday, the lack of diversity among the Academy Award nominations made headlines.  (Remember, Academy Awards are perhaps the most well-known employee-recognition programs in the world.)  The movie Selma – highlighting Martin Luther King Jr.’s remarkable march from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama – failed to receive the nominations many believed the movie was due, which some commentators attribute to racial bias on the part of Oscar voters.  Others point out that two other best picture nominees, The Theory of Everything and Imitation Game, make the business case for diversity, by illustrating that big ideas come from diverse sources.  All of these movies highlight some of the benefits a diverse workforce can provide, which in turn highlights the need for more diversity in the entertainment industry.

In other developments: 

Discrimination
  • The U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments in the Mach Mining case, which questions the pre-suit conciliation efforts of the EEOC.
  • The EEOC sued a catering company for terminating a Rastafarian employee based on his refusal to remove a cap he believed was essential to his religion.
  • Jon Hyman covered a recent case that highlights retaliation, asserting that retaliation claims are “the most dangerous claims that employers face.”
  • After terminating the Atlanta fire chief for remarking that homosexuality is “vile, vulgar and inappropriate,” the Mayor of Atlanta is accused of religious bias.
  • Robin Shea comments on a decision in a new Seventh Circuit case. The case claims that too much information about pending litigation in an SEC filing can be retaliation.
Technology
  • A day after two government accounts were hacked, a senior White House official warned that reliance on usernames and passwords is insufficient cybersecurity.  This comes as the Obama Administration prepares for the State of the Union address, which is expected to include cybersecurity initiatives.
  • Blogging4Jobs covered five trends that all HR professionals should keep an eye on, including mobile and data security.
  • Sierra-Cedar noted that 33 percent of HR departments plan to make changes to their technology in 2015.
  • Spending on human resources technology is up, according to new research from Bersin by Deloitte.
Wage and Hour
Posted by: Kate Bischoff