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News Notes: Temps May Join Unions Where They Work

The National Labor Relations Board has said that temporary and contract workers who are jointly employed by a temp agency and the employer they work for may be included in union bargaining units together with regular employees in the client employer’s workplace. Temps don’t have to receive the same pay and benefits as regular employees, […]

News Notes: Time Off For Voting Reminder

On Election Day, November 7, 2000, you’re required to let employees take paid time off to vote if they don’t have sufficient time outside of work hours. Polling places are open from 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. You don’t have to pay workers for more than two hours off and you can require that they […]

Disciplinary Meetings: Nonunion Employees Win Right To Have Co-Worker Attend; Know Your Options

Unionized workers have long had the right to bring a union representative with them to a disciplinary hearing. Now, in a ruling that could complicate investigations into sexual harassment and other workplace misconduct in nonunion companies, the National Labor Relations Board has ruled that nonunion workers have the same right to have a fellow employee […]

Wage Claims: Messenger Service Agrees To $9.75 Million Settlement

Corporate Express Delivery Systems Inc. will pay a total of $9.75 million to 4,300 former and current messengers in Hayward, Los Angeles and San Diego who claimed they were underpaid. The messengers, who were compensated on commission, charged that the company failed to pay them minimum wage or overtime and violated rules on expense reimbursement. […]

Managing The Workplace: Manager’s Nightmare—Reprimanded Employee Becomes The Boss

While Joni Grand was the acting jail administrator for the city of Glendale, she warned a subordinate, Marvin Quarles, about his inappropriate conduct toward female employees. She reported Quarles’ actions to her superiors who cautioned him as well, but ultimately decided that his actions didn’t amount to sexual harassment. A year later, Quarles became Grand’s […]

Whistleblowing: Worker Gets $37 Million For Turning In Employer

A recent case dramatically illustrates the financial incentive employees have to blow the whistle on their employer. A federal judge has awarded $24 million to Robert Merena, a former SmithKline Beecham billing analyst who charged that the company defrauded the government by billing for unauthorized and unnecessary lab tests under Medicare and other government programs. […]

Employee Complaints: Court Overturns $175,000 Verdict For Policemen Who Claimed Retaliation

Two white male Los Angeles police officers who claim they were transferred in retaliation for complaining about their African-American female supervisor, have lost a $175,000 verdict a jury had awarded them. The federal Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, in overturning the verdict, acknowledged that racial and gender equity issues did arise in the officers’ complaints […]

Unions: Employer Not Entitled To Injunction To Block Picketers

Gigante USA Inc., a Los Angeles supermarket operator, went to court to get an injunction prohibiting union members from picketing in front of its stores. Gigante argued that the restriction was necessary to protect the safety of store employees and customers following an incident in which union members disrupted a new store’s opening day to […]

News Flash: Supreme Court OKs Arbitration Agreements For Employment Disputes

In welcome news for employers, the California Supreme Court has just issued its long-awaited decision on mandatory arbitration agreements. The court spelled out the minimum requirements for such agreements to be valid and clarified which provisions are illegal. We’ll have a full analysis of the impact of the ruling on California employers, along with a […]

News Flash: IWC Recommends $1 Minimum-Wage Hike

The Industrial Welfare Commission has proposed boosting the state minimum wage to $6.75 an hour by 2002. At its August 17 meeting, the IWC approved a plan for a 50-cent raise on January 1, 2001, and another 50-cent jump on January 1, 2002. The IWC will hold a series of hearings in coming weeks to […]