NLRB May Make Significant Changes Even Without EFCA

The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) celebrated the 75th anniversary of the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA), which created the Board. Commenting on the stalled so-called Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA), Chairman Wilma Liebman noted that congressional inaction on the EFCA may contribute to the “flip-flopping” with which the Board has been accused. She also […]

What to Do When Contagious Illnesses Come to Work

by Susan Fahey Desmond You’ve probably had enough of hearing about the swine flu (now called the H1N1 virus). It’s front-page news across the world. We are now in a full pandemic as defined by the World Health Organization, but the first thing to understand is not to panic. Your company may already have been […]

Employer’s Guide to Writing Employee Handbooks

by Peter M. Panken An employee handbook tells workers what they’re getting, instills a team spirit, and lets people know what the rules are. It should emphasize the employer’s fair treatment and how it provides significant benefits like vacations, holidays, health insurance, and retirement benefits. It lets the workers know they can grieve to get […]

Employers Should Prepare in Case Swine Flu Returns this Fall

A swine flu pandemic was a no-show this past spring, but there’s no guarantee it won’t come roaring back when the regular flu season gets under way this fall. Swine flu (also called the H1N1 virus) should be taken seriously because this particular strain hasn’t been seen before, so people haven’t built up natural immunity. […]

Possible Impact of New NLRB on Employers

by Brian R. Garrison By now, most everyone has heard about organized labor’s biggest priority, the Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA) — an unprecedented attempt by labor unions to organize non-union employers. But while the EFCA has garnered the lion’s share of media attention, a recent less publicized change may have a similar impact on […]

Obama Administration’s Changes at DOL, EEOC, and NLRB

The changes promised by the Obama administration are beginning to take hold at the federal agencies regulating the workplace. Typically, the change in leadership can be a strong predictor of the changes in policies and directions that will be pursued by a new administration. Not surprisingly, the changes that already have occurred suggest that we […]

Wrongful Termination: Labor Relations Law Preempted Employee’s Wrongful Discharge Lawsuit—But Caution Still Required

Richard Luke was a maintenance engineer for Collotype Labels USA, Inc., a Napa manufacturer of wine and liquor labels. Luke was suspended for three days for allegedly violating an absence-related work rule. He disagreed with the suspension and handled it by emailing Nigel Vinecombe, the group managing director for Collotype’s Australia office. Luke titled the […]

What Can HR Do About Workplace Gossip?

Let’s face it. We’re living in a society that’s fascinated, if not obsessed, with the private lives of other people. As much as you may want to deny it, you know you’ve looked at the National Enquirer more than once — even if it was just while you were waiting in the grocery store checkout […]

Employee Handbooks: Rule Banning Employee Fraternizing Gets Struck Down; What Employers Need to Know

To lower the risk of getting sued for sexual harassment, many companies have adopted nonfraternization policies, often focused on ensuring that romantic relationships, particularly those involving supervisors and their subordinates, don’t create a conflict of interest. Sometimes these policies are designed to avoid conflicts of interest with customers.