On February 17, 2011, the Assembly approved a bill (A3707) to clarify recent changes in the Unemployment Insurance Law regarding disqualification from unemployment insurance benefits for misconduct by claimants. If passed, the bill would add a definition of “simple misconduct” that codifies into the statute the definition of “minor” misconduct found in existing regulations. The bill also would replace the law’s definition of “severe misconduct,” which currently only lists examples, with a comprehensive definition. The definition would include work-connected misconduct other than gross misconduct that either: 1) is committed with malice and deliberate disregard for the property, safety or life of people at the work site or consumers, and consists of violence, threats, theft, or other employee-caused, substantial property or monetary loss; or 2) is comprised of a pattern of instances of simple misconduct that are, after written employer warnings, repeated so frequently that they cause substantial property damage or disruption of employer operations. The bill also would add to the Unemployment Insurance Law the requirement found in existing regulations that the burden of proof is on the employer to demonstrate that employee actions constitute misconduct, and it would add a requirement not in the current regulations that the employer must provide written documentation to show that the employee’s actions constitute simple misconduct, serious misconduct, or gross misconduct.
TOXIC MOLD. SICK BUILDING SYNDROME. MOLD SICKNESS. These are some of the popular catch phrases employed by those who seek to profit by perpetuating the mythology that has fueled a cottage litigation industry of mold hysteria for more than a decade. Despite the rejection of these notions as “junk science”…..
A New Valentine’s Day Conundrum for Employers: Could Emoji Messages Amount to Harassment in the #MeToo Era?
It’s Valentine’s Day yet again, but this year the climate is different for employers. Between the #MeToo and #TimesUp movements, and the near-daily collapse of famous and powerful men (and some women) due to allegations of sexual harassment, employers are on high alert for any sign that sexual misconduct could be going on underneath their noses. While the holiday season usually brings the most challenges for human resources professionals trying to ensure holiday parties do not get out of hand and religious accommodation issues are properly handled, another holiday causes heartburn for many: Valentine’s Day.
As employees return to work, some employers are asking if there could be another tool to detect COVID-19 in the workplace: detection dogs. Traditionally, the military has used detection dogs to find bombs, and law enforcement has used them to sniff out narcotics, guns, electronics, or other contraband. More recently, scientists and researchers have used detection dogs to identify medical conditions.