News and Analysis
Employers, as well as unionized workers wishing to move on from their relationship with labor unions, recently received good news from the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). On July 3, 2019, the board modified the legal framework that permits employers to stop bargaining prior to the expiration of a collective bargaining agreement, and announce they will eject the union when the contract ends. Here is analysis from OMA Connections Partner Bricker & Eckler. 7/30/2019
Gov. Mike DeWine this week signed into law Senate Bill 57, legalizing hemp and hemp-derived cannabidiol (CBD) products in Ohio. This means retailers can start selling hemp-derived CBD products and Ohio’s Department of Agriculture can outline a program for farmers to start growing the crop.
Employers are raising questions about CBD, such as whether there is tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in CBD products, or if CBD will show up on drug tests. OMA Connections Partner Working Partners® has published this helpful video and infographic to assist employers (and their employees) in navigating this touchy topic as they work to maintain a drug-free workplace. 8/1/2019
OMA Connections Partner Bricker & Eckler reports that Toledo recently joined the growing number of U.S. jurisdictions — including Cincinnati — to pass local ordinances prohibiting employers from asking applicants for salary history. According to the firm, the Toledo ordinance’s stated purpose is to “reduce the pay inequality for all.” It goes into effect June 25, 2020, so employers with operations in Toledo should begin reviewing and changing their applications and practices. Here’s more analysis from Bricker & Eckler. 7/22/2019
There are steps that businesses can take to drastically reduce the time in which an employee (or former employee) can take legal action against their employer. According to OMA Connections Partner Franz Ward, well-drafted employer-employee agreements can provide employers with an important layer of added protection against many types of employment claims. To learn more, click here. 7/22/2019
The U.S. Department of Labor has published new opinion letters that address compliance issues related to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). The opinion letters issued on Monday include:
- Addressing the calculation of overtime pay for non-discretionary bonuses paid on a quarterly and annual basis.
- Addressing permissible rounding practices for calculating an employee’s hours worked.
Opinion letters serve as a means by which the public can develop a clearer understanding of FLSA compliance. 7/1/2019
In a 3-1 decision, the National Labor Relations Board recently ruled that employers may prohibit non-employee union representatives from soliciting or promoting union membership within common areas of an employer’s business — such as public restaurants and cafeterias — as long as the employer does so in a non-discriminatory manner. This action overruled 38 years of precedent. See the analysis from OMA Connections Partner and national law firm Dinsmore on this important policy change. 6/19/2019
The labor law experts at OMA Connections Partner Bricker & Eckler have alerted clients about the increase in class action lawsuits by employees who claim they have been denied equal parental leave time.
Recently, JPMorgan Chase reached a tentative settlement with a male employee who took legal action because he was not offered the company’s 16-week paid parental leave for mothers who are primary caregivers. The employee’s gripe? He received only two weeks to bond with his newborn.
The attorneys at Bricker & Eckler write: “The recent uptick of lawsuits and settlements regarding unequal paid parental leave highlights the importance of understanding the different types of leave and ensuring that policies conform to the applicable laws. Well-intended and often progressive leave policies can easily run afoul of such requirements.” 6/3/2019
Late last week, the U.S. House of Representatives voted 236-173 to approve legislation that would make it illegal to discriminate against people on the basis of sexual orientation.
The Equality Act would amend the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and other statutes to prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity in employment, public education, access to credit, jury service, federal funding, housing, and public accommodations. The bill now moves to the Senate for consideration.
The OMA joined a large coalition of business organizations including the National Association of Manufacturers and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in supporting the bill. To see how Ohio’s delegation voted, click here. 5/20/2019
From OMA Connections Partner Working Partners®, we learn that operating a comprehensive drug-free workplace program can be challenging in a blended workforce with employees who are mandated by the Department of Transportation (DOT) and those who are not.
Employers frequently ask why they can’t just have one policy/program that covers both CDL drivers subject to DOT and employees who aren’t DOT-mandated. For practical and operational reasons, it is recommended that employers have separate policies that work in concert.
For more advice regarding how to cover your entire workforce with your drug-free policy and plan, read on. 5/10/2019
OMA Connections Partner Calfee has provided another update on the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s (EEOC) 2016 requirement that ordered covered employers to report compensation information by race, ethnicity, and gender in their Employer Information Report EEO-1 reports. The Trump administration suspended these provisions in 2017.
Late last week, a U.S. district judge for the District of Columbia ruled that — in addition to submitting EEO-1 surveys on employee demographic data by May 31 — covered employers (e.g., those with at least 100 employees, or federal contractors with at least 50 workers) must also report employee pay data by September 30. More than 60,000 employers would be affected if the judge’s ruling stands.
This week, as a result of the April 25 court order, the EEOC announced that both calendar year 2018 and calendar year 2017 Component 2 EEO-1 pay data will be due September 30, 2019. The collection period for 2017 and 2018 data will open mid-July.
This is a developing issue. The OMA will keep you apprised as more information becomes available. 5/2/2019