Author Archives: aulaborlawforum

Massachusetts becomes Fourth State to Sign Domestic Workers’ Bill of Rights into Law

BY Christopher Valencia On July 2, 2014, Governor Deval Patrick signed the Massachusetts Domestic Workers’ Bill of Rights into law. See Massachusetts Bill of Rights, National Domestic Workers Alliance, http://www.domesticworkers.org/mass-bill-of-rights (last visited Nov. 17, 2014). Under the new law, a domestic worker is defined as “an individual or employee who is paid by an employer […]

Colbert v. Department of Veterans Affairs: A Finding of Whistleblowing Activity

By Berna Shamansurova A Department of Veterans Affairs employee made a nonfrivolous allegation of a protected disclosure when he disclosed facts about an allegedly improper medication distribution procedure. He also alleged that veterans were given unauthorized access to restricted hospital areas. The Merit Systems Protection Board held that disclosure was a “contributing factor of the agency’s […]

Mandated Sick Leave Debate: Is there a middle ground?

by Lorna Lunney The debate over mandatory sick leave continues to challenge state and city governments across the country. Most recently, Philadelphia fell one vote short for mandatory sick days leaving 180,000 workers without the benefit. This vote followed the second time Mayor Nutter vetoed a bill that would allow hourly workers without earned sick […]

Joint Employers Smoked Out of Hiding

By Nicholas J. Gleichman On July 29, 2014, General Counsel of the National Labor Relations Board, Richard F. Griffin issued a statement instructing regional offices to include McDonald’s USA LLC as a “joint employer” with its franchisees in 43 pending unfair labor practices cases. This development comes two months after a wave of fast food […]

EEOC Files First Lawsuits to Protect Rights of Transgender Workers

EEOC Files First Lawsuits to Protect Rights of Transgender Workers by Kathryn Kimball In September, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) filed the first lawsuits seeking to protect the rights of transgender workers under the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The two cases are similar but were filed in different federal courts – one in […]

APPLY TO BE ON THE LABOR & EMPLOYMENT LAW FORUM!

Hello Labor and Employment Staff Members! I hope your semester is off to a wonderful start! The Editorial Board just had its first meeting this week, and here are some upcoming events and deadlines for those interested. We are looking for members who want to be come involved with LEF. First off, we are looking […]

Equal Pay Debate Continues in the Midst of Legislative Stall

by Samantha Serna The Equal Pay Debate gained momentum on April 8, 2014 as President Obama marked the 51st Anniversary of the 1963 Equal Pay Act by signing into law an executive order aimed at addressing unequal pay. The Executive Order, “Non-Retaliation for Disclosure of Compensation Information,” applies certain provisions of the Paycheck Fairness Act […]

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 […]