Archives

Sample Internet Policy

Here’s a sample Internet policy you can modify and/or expand to meet your organization’s specific needs. Have your employees sign the policy, acknowledging they understand it and agree to be bound by its terms. [Company] Internet Policy   Business use only. [Company] provides Internet access (including e-mail) to its employees to assist and facilitate business […]

Employee Internet Use: How To Guard Against New Online Risks-From Copyright Violations To Sexual Harassment

An employee has been copying pornographic images off the Internet and showing them to co-workers. Another has been using company e-mail to distribute racist jokes. And several others have downloaded some hot new software onto their office PCs-violating federal copyright laws. It’s bad enough these employees are surfing the Net instead of working. But you […]

Sexual Harassment: Worker Forced To Cover Up Boss’s Affair Wins $260,000

You know that inappropriate comments or behavior in the workplace can put you on the hook for big sexual harassment damages. But in a new twist, a law firm employee has won more than a quarter-million dollars because her boss used her to help keep his out-of-the-office, extramarital affair a secret. The jury’s award shows […]

Domestic Partner Benefits: More Insurance Available, But Warn Employees About Risks Before They Sign Up

Although health benefits for employees’ domestic partners are becoming more common, many small to mid-sized employers have had trouble finding an insurance company willing to provide the coverage. Several new developments, though, may make it easier for you to extend these benefits to your workers. But there could also be a serious downside for employees […]

Age Discrimination: Court Says You Can Terminate Highly Paid Workers And Retain Cheaper, Younger Employees; Caution Still Required

A California court of appeal has ruled that when making personnel decisions, you can give preference to employees with lower salaries over those with higher ones as long as you do so for financial reasons. This is true even though it may result in your older workers being more negatively impacted. Despite the new ruling, […]

News Notes: Huge Verdict For Executive Fired For Discussing “Seinfeld” Episode

A jury has awarded $26.6 million to a veteran Miller Brewing Company executive who was fired for sexual harassment after discussing an episode of “Seinfeld.” Jerold Mackenzie told co-worker Patricia Best about a scene in which Jerry Seinfeld can’t remember his girlfriend’s name, only that it rhymes with a female body part. Mackenzie testified that […]

News Notes: New Background Checking Tool Can Help Avoid Employee Ripoffs

Employers may soon be able to screen out applicants who have a history of stealing. A private database called TheftNet lists workers who have admitted or been convicted of workplace theft or shoplifting from participating employers. Although TheftNet is currently available only to very large companies, plans are under way to make the information accessible […]

News Notes: Free OSHA Compliance Advice Available Online

Federal OSHA has released free software on its web site – www.osha.gov – that can save you time and frustration in figuring out whether you comply with certain complex health and safety rules. Three interactive programs are available, including Asbestos Advisor, Cadmium Biological Advisor, and Confined Spaces Advisor, and more are in the works.