Quick Hits - October 11, 2023 - American Society of Employers - ASE Staff

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Quick Hits - October 11, 2023

EEOC is getting aggressive this year:  With a democratic majority, the EEOC filed 143 discrimination lawsuits in its just-completed fiscal year—a 52% increase from the 94 reported last year, a spike in activity that employment attorneys predict will be exceeded this fiscal year.  Further, charges in last fiscal year increased 20%.  EEO compliance training should be a priority this coming year.

LinkedIn AI tools: Two new LinkedIn tools — Recruiter 2024 and LinkedIn Learning’s AI-powered coaching — can help talent acquisition leaders improve the hiring process and build relationships.   The company began rolling out the tools to a handful of customers last week with plans to expand use globally to Recruiter and Learning Hub customers throughout the rest of the year.  “As the skills required to do our jobs change by a staggering 65% by 2030, the role of HR has never been more important,” Hari Srinivasan, head of product at LinkedIn Talent Solutions, said in the announcement.  “Managing this change isn’t easy, and HR leaders will need better data and tools to help their organizations adapt to change, on top of building relationships with candidates,” Srinivasan said.  Source:  HR Dive 10/3/23

It’s all about finances: High inflation is a major reason why just 42% of employees say they feel financially well, according to the Bank of America survey. That’s the lowest percentage in the 13-year history of the survey.  Likewise, 64% of employees say they are stressed about their finances. Among older Millennials, those aged 35 to 44, 80% report feeling stressed about money.  And women are much more worried than men.  The average family is spending about $700 more per month on the same goods and services relative to two years ago, according to Moody’s Analytics. Just 38% of women say they feel financially well, according to the Bank of America survey. That’s a five-year low and down from 55% last year.  Almost one in four (23%) women say financial stress is keeping them up at night, compared with just 5% for men, according to Bank of America. Just over half (54%) of women in the survey worry they won’t be able to make ends meet due to inflation, compared with 32% for men.  And 39% of women surveyed say they had to look for additional employment to keep up with rising costs, more than twice as many as men (17%).  While 61% of Asian employees say they feel financially well, just 44% of White employees, 40% of Hispanic and 35% of Black said the same.  Source:  CNN 9/25/23

Probably sometime soon everyone will have to use E-Verify:  A bill proposed by six Republican senators would require all employers to use the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s E-Verify program to authorize employment eligibility and would increase the national minimum wage from $7.25 an hour to $11.  Titled the Higher Wages for American Workers Act, the bill proposes a phased expansion of E-Verify that would require large employers with 10,000 or more employees to use E-Verify for all hires beginning six months from the date of enactment. Smaller employers would be categorized based on the size of their workforces, and each category would have a corresponding deadline to begin using E-Verify.  Minimum wage would also be phased to eventually increase to $11 per hour.   Assuming this law (a big if) or another similar one passes, most employers would be able to do remote I-9s per USCIS requirements.  But again, not now but sometime in the future.  Source:  HR Dive 9/14/23

Failing to follow Washington’s pay transparency requirements leads to unexpected plaintiff:  A job applicant said Washington state's law requiring employers to post salary ranges in job ads gives her the right to sue Qdoba for failing to do so, arguing she did not need to have been offered a job or interviewed to be negatively affected by the lack of pay transparency.  The plaintiff filed a class action lawsuit against Qdoba under Washington's Equal Pay and Opportunity Act, or EPOA, arguing that they are a victim of Qdoba's discriminatory job posting and application process that supports a cycle of pay inequity. The plaintiff applied for a job at a Seattle Qdoba location in February, one month after the EPOA went into effect, and said the posting did not include the required pay details, meaning she wasted valuable time applying for a job without knowing the pay range. The law sets a minimum statutory penalty of $5,000 per job applicant and the class may include 2,000 or more applicants.  Depending how this plays out, the potential for fly by night lawsuits against employers who fail to follow the EPOA could be high.  An applicant needs only to apply to be a plaintiff.  Source:  Law360 9/18/23

AI regulatory bill introduced in Congress: On September 21, 2023, Senators Ron Wyden, D-Ore. and Cory Booker, D-N.J., along with Representative Yvette Clarke, D-N.Y., introduced the Algorithmic Accountability Act of 2023. The bicameral legislation was drafted to provide protections for people affected by artificial intelligence (AI) systems which are already impacting decisions affecting housing, credit, education, and other high-impact uses. The bill applies to new generative AI systems used for critical decisions, as well as other AI and automated systems. The bill provides a baseline requirement that companies assess the impacts of automating critical decision-making, including decision processes that have already been automated.   The bill also has several requirements for the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), including requiring the agency to create regulations providing structured guidelines for assessment and reporting, as well as requiring the FTC publish an annual anonymized aggregate report on trends and to establish a repository of information where consumers and advocates can review which critical decisions have been automated by companies along with information such as data sources, high level metrics and how to contest decisions, where applicable.   Source: CCH 9/21/23


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