A bill (A2252) reintroduced in the Assembly on February 11 seeks to prohibit employers from requiring employees to sign pre-dispute arbitration agreements, as well as other waiver agreements (such as the waiver of a jury trial, statutes of limitations, certain damages, discovery, etc.) as a condition of their hiring. The bill would not, however, prohibit employers and employees from agreeing to arbitrate claims after a dispute arises. Similar bills have been unsuccessfully introduced by the state legislature for over a decade.
Ogletree Deakins’ Traditional Labor Relations Practice Group is pleased to announce the publication of the Summer 2021 issue of the Practical NLRB Advisor. This issue offers insight into the significant and accelerated changes in labor relations policy we have seen since President Joe Biden took office.
Maintaining a company anti-harassment policy on a bulletin board and website is not enough to avoid liability for sexual discrimination according to a recent decision. On July 20, 2016, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals revived a sexual harassment lawsuit filed by a school board’s clerical employee who alleged inappropriate comments and touching from a manager. While the board’s policy manual contained reasonable policy and complaint procedures to prevent harassment, the court found evidence the board made insufficient efforts to train the alleged harasser and other employees about such policies. This case clarifies the scope of an important affirmative defense for employers and demonstrates the importance of clearly explaining policies to employees.
EEOC Roundup, Part II: The Latest Personnel Changes at the Agency and How They Are Expected to Shape Policy
There is an old saying in Washington, D.C., that personnel is policy. It is common sense: whoever is in charge of a federal agency or subagency will impart his or her own particular policy preferences on the agency’s priorities, resource allocation, and regulatory agenda. In the current hyper-partisan political environment, where the U.S. Congress has ceded much of the federal policymaking apparatus to the federal agencies, this old saying is even more appropriate. The situation is more complicated, however, when talking about agencies that are helmed by bipartisan boards or commissions. One such agency is the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), where a continuing Republican majority plays a significant role in policy developments and prevents Democratic members from completely gaining control of the agency.