Author Archives: aulaborlawforum

Proceed with Caution: The NLRB Strikes Down Workplace Rules Prohibiting Negativity and Gossip

by Andrea De León On April 1, 2014, the National Labor Relations Board (the Board), in Hills and Dales General Hospital,found that policies prohibiting negativity, gossip, and negative representation of the employer violate the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA). Under Section 8(a)(1) of the NLRA, it is “an unfair labor practice for an employer to […]

Sandifer v. U.S. Steel Corp.

Employees need not be compensated for donning and doffing protective gear they are required to wear by their employers. Petitioner and others filed a collective action under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) seeking backpay for time spent putting on and taking off pieces of protective gear that they assert respondent requires workers to wear […]

Laurus Technical Institute

According to the National Labor Relations Board, implementing a “no gossip policy” that prohibits employees from gossiping about their employer, other employees, or customers, and subsequently firing an employee for violating that policy, is a violation of the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA). Nine months after Laurus Technical Institute implemented a no gossip policy in […]

“Student-athletes” or “Employees”: the Potential Unionization of Division I College Football.

College football players are currently regarded by the NCAA as “student-athletes” and at most Division I programs, they are given stipends and scholarships for their participation; however, the College Athletes Players Association (CAPA) would prefer for the football players to be regarded as “employees.” In a recent NLRB Chicago Regional Board hearing, CAPA argued that […]

American Express Co. v. Italian Colors Restaurant

Class action waivers in arbitration agreements are strictly enforceable under the Federal Arbitration Act (FAA), even in circumstances where an individual’s arbitration costs surpass the potential recovery. Due to the tremendous disparity in the costs of individual arbitration compared with minimal financial recovery, Italian Colors Restaurant and merchants filed a class action suit against American […]

Burrage v. United States

Dicta in this criminal case concerning a heroin death questions the applicability of a penalty enhancement provision in the Controlled Substance Act; the dicta includes a section explicating on causation that Title VII retaliation claims must be proven by a “but-for” causation standard, therefore refining the holding in University of Texas Southwest Medical Center v. […]

Third Circuit Upholds New H-2B Prevailing Wage Calculations

Employers seeking foreign workers through the H-2B visa program will have a new prevailing wage determination pursuant to a 2011 regulation. Concerned employers brought suit against the Department of Labor (DOL) challenging the DOL’s authority to create and implement the rule, citing violations of the Administrative Procedure Act and the Regulatory Flexibility Act. The 2011 […]

Du Daobin v. Cisco Sys.

Corporate liability in the aftermath of Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum Co. continues to be indefinite. Du Daobin filed action against Cisco in federal district court in Maryland, alleging the Golden Shield (a nationwide surveillance program) detected his circulation of Internet articles calling for fair treatment of rural farmers in China, after which he was […]

EEOC Issues Guidance on Criminal Background Checks

The EEOC issued Enforcement Guidance on the Consideration of Arrest and Conviction Records in Employment Decisions under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 in April of 2012, in light of significant recent rulings against employers related to criminal background checks. The guidance does not prohibit criminal background checks, but rather it requires […]

Weeks v. 735 Putnam Pike Operation

The Supreme Court of Rhode Island held that the language in the collective bargaining agreement between the defendant employer and the plaintiff’s union was insufficiently explicit to preclude the plaintiff from seeking redress in a judicial, rather than arbitral, forum. In this case, the plaintiff appealed a superior court’s order to submit to arbitration as […]

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