Friday, December 6, 2019

WIRTW #579 (the “blank slate” edition)

Next Saturday, December 14, Norah and her Fake ID bandmates will be traveling west to Elyria, Ohio, to play Blank Slate, a very cool all ages, all inclusive, and substance free club. Tickets are only $5 if you buy them in advance (here) or $7 at the door.

Here’s what I read this week.


HR & Employee Relations


Wage & Hour


OSHA & Safety

Thursday, December 5, 2019

Does it violate the ADA to work an employee in excess of a work restriction?

Rita Morrissey is a licensed practical nurse who worked for 15 years for The Laurels of Coldwater, a skilled nursing and rehabilitation center. In 2012, she injured her back outside of work, and submitted a note to her employer from her primary care physician limiting her to no more than 12 hours of work per shift. Coldwater refused the accommodation, telling Morrissey that it would not accommodate any medical condition that did not stem from a work-related injury.

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

Do you know how to calculate the “regular rate of pay” for your employees? (hint: probably not)

The Fair Labor Standards Act requires that employers pay their non-exempt employees one and one-half times the “regular rate of pay” for any hours worked in excess of 40 in any work week. For an employee paid a straight hourly rate, this calculation is simple and straight forward. A $10 per hour employee earns an overtime rate of $15 per overtime hour. Easy peasy.

Often times, however, employees aren’t just paid a straight hourly rate. Uh oh.

Tuesday, December 3, 2019

The 20th nominee for the “worst employer of 2019” is … the malignant mogul

The 20th (and final) nominee for the Worst Employer of 2019 is Alki David, heir to the Coca-Cola bottling fortune and owner of several media firms.

The evidence?

This week, a jury awarded over $58 million to a female employee who accused him of thrusting his pelvis into her face, simulating oral sex, moaning, and zipping up his pants and walking away saying, “Thanks, M.K.”

Monday, December 2, 2019

As sure as today is Cyber Monday, your employees are shopping from work

Today is Cyber Monday, the biggest online shopping day of the holiday season. In fact, it is estimated that today will be the biggest online shopping day ever, with over $9.4 billion in sales.

And, guess what? Given that most of those doing the shopping will be spending the majority of their prime shopping hours at work, from where do you think they will be making most of their Cyber Monday purchases.

Friday, November 22, 2019

WIRTW #578 (the “credibility” edition)

Yesterday, the NFL upheld the indefinite suspension of Cleveland Browns’ defensive lineman Myles Garrett, who last week assaulted Pittsburgh Steelers’ quarterback Mason Rudolph on the field with his helmet.

At his suspension hearing, Garrett attempted to mitigate his misconduct by claiming that Rudolph had used a racial slur on the field.

Garrett’s problem? It was the first time he had raised that claim in the week following the incident. He didn’t raise it on the field. Or after the game. Or to the media. Or at any time prior to his hearing. Even his teammates were caught off guard by the claim. And that’s a huge problem for the credibility of his defense.

In harassment cases, credibility is everything. And if employee waits until a trial or hearing to raise a claim of harassment, his (or her) credibility, as well as their claim, is shot.

Here’s what I read this week.

Thursday, November 21, 2019

“Hairstyle discrimination” laws: a solution in search of a problem

I fully embrace the irony of a local news broadcast holding me out as the expert on hair discrimination. 👨🏻‍🦲

Irony notwithstanding, here I am on last night’s 6 o’clock news discussing why we don’t need to ban workplace hairstyle discrimination. (Big thank you to WEWS’s Mike Brookbank for reaching out and for the interview.)

Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Is your business prepared for a cyber attack? (probably not, but I can help.)

I’d like to share three scary cybersecurity statistics with you.
  1. 60 percent of small businesses fail within 6 months of a cyber attack.
  2. 72 percent of small businesses rate their ability to mitigate cyber risks, vulnerabilities and attacks as other than highly effective.
  3. 90 percent of data breaches are caused by human error.

These numbers mean that most of you reading this post work for a company that is not doing nearly enough to mitigate your cyber-risk. Coupled with the truth that data breaches are a when issue, and not an if issue, these numbers also mean that everyone’s data is way too exposed, and no matter what you are currently doing in this space, everyone can do more.

Meyers Roman is here to help.

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

It’s not realistic to expect employees not to discuss politics at work, but it is to require them to do so professionally

According to a recent survey conducted by SHRM [pdf], American workers cannot hide from politics at work.
  • 42% of U.S. employees say they have personally experienced political disagreements at work
  • 44% say they have witnessed political disagreements at work
  • 34% believe that their workplace is not inclusive of differing political perspectives
  • 12% report they have personally experienced political affiliation bias or discrimination based on their political views
  • 56% state that political discussions at work have become more common over the past four years

Monday, November 18, 2019

Gay man claims he’s the victim of intentional discrimination because of his sexual orientation … and that’s the least of his employer’s problems

Wesley Wernecke, an ex-employee of New York event planning company Eventique, claims in his recently filed lawsuit that the company intentionally alienated him, ostracized him, and shut him out of the business after its CEO learned Wernecke was gay.

NBC News shares the details of the allegations in Wernecke’s lawsuit.
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