A recent National Labor Relations Board decision is a reminder that consistency is an important factor in determining whether an employer has committed an unfair labor practice. In the case of two Kroger subsidiaries, the NLRB held that the National Labor Relations Act protects an employee’s right to wear buttons and masks in support of Black Lives Matter.Continue Reading Consistency matters: When the employer speaks, the employees may answer

How Constellium should inform employers’ policies and practices 

Assume an employee writes the words “whore board” on company overtime sign-up sheets. Serious misconduct, right? In fact, the employer faced with this situation terminated the employee for offensive conduct.

In Constellium Rolled Products Ravenswood, LLC v. NLRB, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia agreed with a National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) decision finding the termination was unlawful. The case illustrates that National Labor Relations Act protections sometimes can trump an employer’s right to regulate potentially offensive language at work.Continue Reading When it comes to employee discipline, consistency is key

With increasing frequency, employers are raising the question about what can (or can’t) be done with employees who speak about polarizing issues, whether at work or in a way that affects the work environment. This question is arising often because of our current social and political climate. The legal and practical implications are complex.
Continue Reading Employees and free speech

As we enter the third year of a pandemic, the ongoing disruption caused by COVID-19 and its variants often leaves employers juggling legal and business considerations regarding their workforce. Specifically, many employees are also caregivers — whether they are caring for children, a spouse, an individual with a disability or older relatives.
Continue Reading Caring for caregivers: Understanding caregiver discrimination under federal laws

As we recently reported, on Dec. 17, 2021, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals lifted the Fifth Circuit’s stay on the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) COVID-19 Vaccination and Testing Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS). Shortly after the Sixth Circuit’s decision was issued, several opponents of the ETS petitioned the Supreme Court to issue an emergency stay to block OSHA from enforcing the rule.
Continue Reading Opponents of OSHA COVID-19 vaccination and testing rule appeal to Supreme Court

As we previously reported, on Nov. 12, 2021, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals blocked the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) COVID-19 Vaccination and Testing Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) and ordered OSHA to take no steps to implement or enforce the ETS. After that, several lawsuits challenging the ETS were consolidated in the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals, and OSHA filed a motion to dissolve the stay issued by the Fifth Circuit. On Dec. 17, 2021, the Sixth Circuit lifted the stay on the ETS, allowing OSHA to begin enforcing the rule.
Continue Reading OSHA COVID-19 vaccination and testing rule reinstated

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis recently signed House Bill 1B into law, making it more difficult for employers in the state to mandate vaccinations for their employees. The law, which will remain in effect until June 1, 2023, states that an employer may not impose a COVID-19 vaccine requirement without providing five exemptions from the requirement.
Continue Reading Florida enacts law that limits employers’ ability to mandate vaccinations