Monday, March 13, 2017

That is SO last week

Last week, Magnolia Health, a California company that operates health care and assisted living facilities, agreed to pay $325,000 and furnish other relief to settle a disability discrimination class action lawsuit.  In the suit, the EEOC alleged that the company denied employees accommodations for disabilities and refused to hire, or fired, individuals who had disabilities.  Among other claims, the EEOC alleged that Magnolia rescinded employment offers when applicants’ post-offer medical examinations revealed current medical restrictions or a record of disability.  In addition to paying the $325,000 settlement amount, Magnolia agreed to retain a consultant to revise the company’s policies and procedures relating to disability discrimination and to provide training.
Discrimination
  • The Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals held that Title VII does not prohibit employers from discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation.
  • An experiment in which a male and female employee switched their email signatures exposed the effects of gender bias in the workplace.
  • Legislation in Iceland will require companies to prove they pay their employees equally regardless of gender.
  • A Connecticut federal jury awarded $5.5 million to a former Wal-Mart employee who claimed he was fired after he complained of race discrimination.
Technology
  • Mashable critiqued the culture problems in Silicon Valley.
  • Quartz offered an “optimist’s guide to the robot apocalypse.”
  • Technology-related jobs dominated Glass door’s 2017 list of the 25 best-paying jobs in the United States.
  • SHRM reminded HR professionals that they need to educate employees about employer expectations for social media use off the clock.
In Other News
  • The healthcare bill currently under consideration in the U.S. House of Representatives would allow employers to impose penalties on employees who decline to share their genetic information as part of an employer-sponsored wellness program.
  • An author in Quartz argued that multi-lingual speakers make the most valuable employees because of the way their brains function.
  • A Massachusetts company will pay $1.2 million in restitution  to more than 550 workers after a DOL and Massachusetts AG investigation found the business was not paying its workers overtime and earned sick time and was violating child labor laws.
  • Former Fox News anchor Gretchen Carlson spoke against mandatory arbitration clauses in employment contracts at a press conference convened by U.S. Senator Al Franken.
  • The first round of March Madness has been estimated to cost employers $4 billion in lost productivity, but SHRM suggested HR take a laissez-faire approach to office pools.
  • Fast Company offered advice on preparing for an immigration raid on your workplace.