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EEOC Guidelines on LGBTQ Struck Down by Court, Now What?

29 November 2022

EEOC Guidelines on LGBTQ Struck Down by Court, Now What?

Author: Anthony Kaylin

On June 15, 2020, the Supreme Court ruled that Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act protects LGBTQ rights (Bostock v. Clayton County Georgia, No. 17-1618 (June 15, 2020)).  Before the decision, 21 states had their own laws prohibiting job discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity, and seven more provided that protection only to public employees. Michigan just recently added itself to the list.

A New Approach to ADA Accommodations

22 November 2022

A New Approach to ADA Accommodations

Author: Anthony Kaylin

A recent U.S. Federal 11th Circuit case upended the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) guidance as to disability and accommodations.  Under the guidance, an employee merely has a functional rather than a medical definition of disability, and the determination of whether an individual has a disability doesn't necessarily hinge on the name or diagnosis of an impairment. Once an employer is on notice, they must engage in an interactive discussion concerning any...
Be Aware of Potential Bias with AI

22 November 2022

Be Aware of Potential Bias with AI

Author: Susan Chance

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is being used more often and for a variety of purposes. Michigan State University received a $1.7 million grant to use AI in finding new drugs for treating diseases. Cyber security uses AI in various forms such as facial recognition to “verify a person’s real-world identity.” These seem to be good uses for AI.

How Should Employers Handle Workplace Proselytizing?

11 October 2022

How Should Employers Handle Workplace Proselytizing?

Author: Anthony Kaylin

The current U.S. Supreme Court endorses workers’ rights when it comes to expressing religious values at work.  In the last term’s case of Kennedy v. Bremerton School District, No. 21-418 (2022), Kennedy was a football coach who kneeled and prayed on the 50-yard line after a game.  He was suspended by the Bremerton School District in the state of Washington for whom he worked. 

EEOC’s Report on EEO-1 Pay Collection Tool from NAS is Published

2 August 2022

EEOC’s Report on EEO-1 Pay Collection Tool from NAS is Published

Author: Anthony Kaylin

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) commissioned a report by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NAS), which studied the EEOC’s historic, first-time collection of pay data from certain private employers and federal contractors completed in 2020. The NAS study was commissioned by a unanimous vote of the bipartisan Commission in 2020. 

When an Employee Refuses to do Work That Violates Their Religious Beliefs

26 July 2022

When an Employee Refuses to do Work That Violates Their Religious Beliefs

Author: Anthony Kaylin

In a recent situation that not only involved religious beliefs but also medical needs, a Walgreens’ employee refused to sell a male contraceptive to a married woman because it violated their faith.  Walgreens policy allows for employees to do this.  A Walgreens spokesperson said that its employees are allowed to “step away from completing a transaction to which they have a moral objection.”  A manager eventually sold the contraceptive to the woman. 
The Importance of Inclusive Employment Forms

26 July 2022

The Importance of Inclusive Employment Forms

Author: Linda Olejniczak

Inclusive forms and paperwork are an important part of LGBTQ-affirming organizational culture. Not only will inclusive forms allow your organization to capture the most accurate information, but they also serve as “markers” for people exploring your organization. Forms, paperwork, and applications send strong messaging around who is welcome and counted in your culture.

Ageism Rearing Its Ugly Head

7 June 2022

Ageism Rearing Its Ugly Head

Author: Anthony Kaylin

For the past 20 years or so, many HR consultants and thinkers have called employees “assets” or “capital assets” of the employer.  The problem with these terms is manyfold. 

Discrimination Issues with AI

31 May 2022

Discrimination Issues with AI

Author: Anthony Kaylin

As more organizations embrace artificial intelligence (AI), the EEOC and U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) have begun to be more cognizant of the discriminatory issues associated with these tools.

U.S. Department of Justice Issues New Guidelines for Website Accessibility

3 May 2022

U.S. Department of Justice Issues New Guidelines for Website Accessibility

Author: Anthony Kaylin

On March 18, 2022, the U.S. Department of Justice ("DOJ") published guidance on website accessibility specific to how state and local governments (Title II of the ADA) and "public accommodations" (Title III of the ADA) can remove unnecessary barriers that make it difficult or impossible for people with disabilities to use websites. 

U.S. Department of Labor Focuses on Retaliation

26 April 2022

U.S. Department of Labor Focuses on Retaliation

Author: Michael Burns

Equal employment laws (EEO) have protections against employer retaliation. Retaliation is an adverse employment action an employer takes against an employee who, for example, whistle blows against their employer, makes a claim of discrimination, or even participates in a wrongful employment action investigation against the employer.

Ageism is Alive and Well and Running Rampant

22 March 2022

Ageism is Alive and Well and Running Rampant

Author: Anthony Kaylin

In a recent survey by the AARP, nearly 80% of older employees say they’ve seen or experienced age discrimination in the workplace. The percentage of jobseekers in February above the age of 55 who were “long-term unemployed,” meaning they’d been looking for a job for 27 weeks or more, was more than 36%, compared to around 23% among those between the ages of 16 and 54.

#BreakTheBias – Removing Road Blocks to Women’s Leadership Journeys

8 March 2022

#BreakTheBias – Removing Road Blocks to Women’s Leadership Journeys

Author: Heather Nezich

Yesterday, March 8th, was International Women’s Day, a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women. The 2022 theme is #BreakTheBias.

Hiring Individuals with Disabilities is a Boon to Employers

1 March 2022

Hiring Individuals with Disabilities is a Boon to Employers

Author: Anthony Kaylin

According to the CDC, there are about 1 in 4 people in the U.S. or 61 million Americans that have some kind of physical or mental disability.  Not all disabilities are obvious such as paraplegia and quadriplegia, Muscular Dystrophy and Multiple Sclerosis, Cerebral Palsy, and amputation.  There are a number of Americans with hidden disabilities such as diabetes, cancer, epilepsy, dyslexia, color blindness, and more.  How many times have people seen someone with a disabled...
The No-Label Generation and Self-Identification

4 January 2022

The No-Label Generation and Self-Identification

Author: Anthony Kaylin

A growing issue today is identifying demographics, not of just applicants, but also employees.  While typically 1% to 2% of each group may not identify, today anecdotally it is being found at 10% to 15%.  There is a conflict today with 1960 and 1970’s regulations and today’s workforce that prefer no labels. Further, because of government reporting requirements and unknowns both by gender and ethnicity/race in the workforce, HR professionals are becoming more hesitant to...
7 Key Takeaways for Employers Regarding COVID-19 and ADA

21 December 2021

7 Key Takeaways for Employers Regarding COVID-19 and ADA

Author: Heather Nezich

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) just released guidance to clarify under what circumstances COVID-19 may be considered a disability under the ADA and the Rehabilitation Act. This will likely become a more common issue in the workplace as COVID-19 continues to spread and have a lasting effect on some.

Is Racism Subtly Prevalent in Your Organization?

21 December 2021

Is Racism Subtly Prevalent in Your Organization?

Author: Anthony Kaylin

As Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) initiatives take root at many organizations, the questions organizations face is whether or not racism exists in the organization, or if the organization simply reflects norms and culture within it.  As Roosevelt Thomas Jr., a diversity pioneer, has described in his seminal book, Beyond Race and Gender, the roots of an organization run deep, and they are hard to break.  In many cases, social equity initiatives attack these roots to attempt...
OFCCP Launches New Federal Contractor Portal

7 December 2021

OFCCP Launches New Federal Contractor Portal

Author: Anthony Kaylin

August 31, 2021, the Office of Management and Budget approved the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs’ (OFCCP) information collection request for the Affirmative Action Program Verification Interface, through a new online portal, referred to as the Contractor Portal. Covered federal contractors and subcontractors (“contractors”) must use this portal to certify, on an annual basis, whether they have developed and maintained an affirmative action program for each...
Updates to the Illinois Equal Pay Act Reporting

26 October 2021

Updates to the Illinois Equal Pay Act Reporting

Author: Anthony Kaylin

In June the Illinois legislature passed amendments to the Illinois Equal Pay Act reporting requirements, which unfortunately makes it more confusing for employers.  This law is ever evolving and will likely evolve again.

As We Watch for OSHA’s COVID Vaccine Mandate Guidance, Don’t Forget Applicable Wage and Hour Rules

19 October 2021

As We Watch for OSHA’s COVID Vaccine Mandate Guidance, Don’t Forget Applicable Wage and Hour Rules

Author: Michael Burns

As we wait for the OSHA guidance detailing how employers (over 100 in employment) can implement mandated vaccination for employees, employers need to keep in mind how they require vaccination and testing may impact proper pay for non-exempt employees.

Transgender Employee Restroom Access – Are You Compliant?

6 October 2021

Transgender Employee Restroom Access – Are You Compliant?

Author: Anthony Kaylin

Last month, the Supreme Court declined to take up the issue of whether the nation's schools must allow students to use the bathroom that matches their gender identities.  In that case, a 4th Circuit Court of Appeals decision, the court ruled in favor of Gavin Grimm, a transgender man who sued his Virginia high school for barring him from using the boys’ restroom.  Grimm stated that “[b]eing forced to use the nurse’s room, a private bathroom, and the girl’s...
Think Harassment Isn’t Happening at Your Organization?  Maybe it Just Isn’t Being Reported.

21 September 2021

Think Harassment Isn’t Happening at Your Organization? Maybe it Just Isn’t Being Reported.

Author: Heather Nezich

From sexual harassment to discrimination to power abuse, harassment affects more than just a handful of employees. Harassment deteriorates culture and morale and can lead to psychological discomfort, leaving a job, or lawsuits. Why is this happening? And how can organizations work to prevent harassment before it begins, or hear about issues when they arise?
Michigan Supreme Court Looks to Review State’s ELCRA Coverage of Sex Discrimination

6 July 2021

Michigan Supreme Court Looks to Review State’s ELCRA Coverage of Sex Discrimination

Author: Michael Burns

Since last year’s U.S. Supreme Court decision employers would be correct in thinking that sexual orientation is protected by Title VII of the federal Civil Rights Act of 1964, and for most Michigan employers they would be correct. However, Michigan itself has its own anti employment discrimination law in the Elliot-Larsen Civil Right Act (ELCRA) and it too has a sex discrimination prohibition in it.  However, Michigan has not technically extended its laws to fully protect sex...
New European Union Pay Equity Requirements

29 June 2021

New European Union Pay Equity Requirements

Author: Anthony Kaylin

The European Union (EU) has long had pay equity laws since its founding by the Treaty of Rome in 1957.  A 2006 Directive (Directive 2006/54/EC) on equal treatment of women and men in matters of employment and occupation requires employers to ensure equal pay for equal work or work of equal value between women and men. It was complemented in 2014 by a European Commission Recommendation on pay transparency. As of March 2021, according to the latest Eurostat findings, the gender pay gap in...
What is in the Illinois Equal Pay Act 2021 Amendments? (Hint: It’s Scary)

18 May 2021

What is in the Illinois Equal Pay Act 2021 Amendments? (Hint: It’s Scary)

Author: Anthony Kaylin

The trend of reporting pay started with California and has moved to Illinois, which instituted its own phased in reporting requirements. The new amendments to the Illinois Equal Pay Act (IEPA) were signed into law (Senate Bill 1480 (SB 1480)) on March 23, 2021.  The certification requirement starts three years from the date of signing into law (March 23, 2024).  The previous amendment to the IEPA was in 2019, which prohibits employers from asking salary history of applicants.
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