Thursday, April 26, 2018

The 7th nominee for the “worst employer of 2018” is … the pregnancy provoker

Kayla Edwards worked as a cashier for Aramark at its location in Gettysburg National Park.

In February 2017, Edwards became pregnant with her third child.

That’s when her troubles at work began, at least according to Edwards’ lawsuit [pdf] (filed earlier this week in federal court in Pennsylvania).

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Nearly half of American workers admit to engaging in workplace revenge

Photo by Avalon_Mists on Pixabay
And every time I scratch my nails
Down someone else’s back I hope you feel it
Alanis Morisette 
Revenge. So natural, and yet so wrong. “Turn the other cheek” is always the preferred practice, and, yet, often life is more “smack you in the cheek” as you turn away.

Even at work.

According to a recent study, 44 percent of workers admit to partaking in some type of workplace revenge.

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Maternity leave does not guarantee continued employment

By Grand Parc CC BY 2.0 via Wiki Commons
Michelle Bailey worked in the human resources department of Oakwood Healthcare. During her maternity leave, her immediate supervisor and others assumed her responsibilities, and discovered certain deficiencies in how she performed her job.

Discovery of those deficiencies led the supervisor to review Bailey’s qualifications as set forth in her employment application. That review, in turn, uncovered an application Bailey had submitted for a different position at Oakwood two years earlier. A comparison of Bailey’s two resumés on file lead to the conclusion that Bailey had falsified her later application by exaggerating her prior experience and qualifications.

That discovery, coupled with the performance deficiencies, caused Oakwood to terminate Bailey’s employment upon her return from maternity leave.

Monday, April 23, 2018

DO NOT sacrifice employee safety for productivity

Photo by Milo McDowell on Unsplash
The Verge reports that workers at an Amazon distribution facility are “forced to pee in bottles or forego their bathroom breaks entirely because fulfillment demands are too high.”

While this is horrible, and demeaning, it’s still just employees peeing in bottles. It’s not THAT big of deal? Right?


Friday, April 20, 2018

WIRTW #502 (the “AirTalk” edition)

Earlier this week, the U.S. Senate made history by unanimously changing its rules to permit Senator (and new mom) Tammy Duckworth to bring her newborn onto the Senate floor while she cast votes.

Yesterday, I guested on Los Angles public radio station KPCC’s AirTalk and spoke with Libby Denkmann about what this means for the future of parental leave laws in America, and why we should be ashamed that countries like Iran and Afghanistan do more for their working moms than we do.

Thanks to Libby for the great conversation, and to my friend, Kate Bischoff, for the connection.

You can listen here. The segment starts at 29:50, and my interview starts at 41:30.

Here’s what I read this week:

Thursday, April 19, 2018

If you weren’t angry about the fired Saints cheerleader before, you will be now.

Remember Bailey Davis? She’s the New Orleans Saints cheerleader fired for violating the team’s social media policy.

Her offense? This photo, which she posted to her personal Instagram.

She’s already filed a civil rights complaint, and now she’s speaking out about her alleged discriminatory treatment, and discriminatory policies in professional cheerleading in general.

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Apparently God is in the restaurant business, at least according to the 6th Circuit

Photo by chuttersnap on Unsplash
It’s been nearly three years since I first reported on the Department of Labor’s wage and hour lawsuit against Akron, Ohio’s, Cathedral Buffet, owned and operated by the Earnest Angley Ministries.

The DOL’s allegations are pretty offensive. Not only did it claim that all of the restaurant’s employees worked for free, it also claimed that the ministry coerced church members into volunteering, telling them they “had an obligation to provide their labor to the Buffet, in service to God, and that a failure to offer their labor to the Buffet … would be the same as failing God;” that Angley “was God’s prophet, and saying ‘no’ to Angley would be tantamount to saying ‘no’ directly to God,” and “‘blaspheming against the Holy Ghost.’”

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

I abhor the term “wage theft,” and you should too

Photo by Thirteen .J on Unsplash
This past Sunday’s Cleveland Plain Dealer ran a story entitled, Do wage theft laws in Ohio harm or help workers? Notably, it quoted yours truly as the voice of management on this issue (thanks to Olivera Perkins for the interview):
Some business advocates argue with the very term “wage theft.” Jon Hyman, a local lawyer who represents employers, says not every employer cited for wage theft has willingly denied rightful wages.”To me, wage theft is a loaded term,” he said. “It presumes an intent to steal.” 

Monday, April 16, 2018

Must you pay employees for FMLA-related breaks during the work day?

Photo by Liam Stahnke on Unsplash
Last week, the Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division resumed its practice of publishing Opinion Letters. One of the first it published answers an interesting question about the intersection of the FLSA and the FMLA.

Must an employer pay an employee for FMLA-approved breaks taken during the work day?

I’ve taken some journalistic license and paraphrased the questions. The answers, however, are verbatim from the DOL Opinion Letter FLSA2018-19 [pdf].

Friday, April 13, 2018

WIRTW #501 (the “fireflies” edition)

According to a recent study, going to concerts adds years to your life.

If this is true (and who am I to argue with science), then last Thursday should propel me into triple digits.

We went to see our fav, Rhett Miller, who invited Norah to share the stage and duet with him.

I learned 4 things watching Norah:
  1. She’s got nerves of steel (which I kind of already knew).
  2. Her performance belies her 11 years of age (which is also kind of already knew).
  3. She can hold her own with a 30-year veteran of the industry.
  4. Thanks to Fake ID, I’m probably on an FBI watchlist.

Thank you Rhett, from Norah (and us, too). You are one of a kind.

Here’s what I read this week: