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The Modern Workplace

In the wake of President Biden’s issuance of executive orders requiring that certain employers in the country require COVID-19 vaccinations, some states, like Texas, are taking action to try to block these mandates. This raises the question of whether a state or local government can override federal vaccine requirements.

Federal Vaccine Mandates

On September 9, 2021, President Biden issued executive orders mandating COVID-19 vaccinations for federal employees, employees of certain health care entities, and certain employees of federal contractors and subcontractors ...

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EEOC Updates Guidance on COVID-19 and the ADA

On October 13, 2021, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) updated its guidance regarding vaccination and other COVID-related workplace issues, providing businesses with important information as they continue to navigate evolving rules and regulations related to the pandemic. The key development from this round of updates is that the EEOC has now clarified that there is no cap or limit under federal employment discrimination laws enforced by the EEOC on the size of vaccine incentives offered by an employer to ...

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Effective October 1, 2021, Connecticut and Nevada join a chorus of other states – including, for example, California, Colorado, Maryland, Washington and Rhode Island - in implementing new pay disclosure laws.  Employers with employees in Connecticut and Nevada must now disclose wage and/or wage range information at various stages in the hiring process. Connecticut and Nevada’s new pay disclosure laws are designed to level the playing field for applicants, promote pay equity, and promote pay transparency and accountability.

Under Connecticut’s “An Act Concerning the ...

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Last month, on September 2, 2021, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP), which enforces federal government contractor requirements, rescinded a Trump-Era notice of intent not to use EEO-1 Component 2 employer pay data to analyze pay equity issues. The OFCCP stated that “it was premature to issue a notice stating OFCCP did not expect to find significant utility in the data.” 84 FR 49354 (September 2, 2021). The EEO-1 Component 2 Data was last collected by the federal government for calendar years 2017 and 2018 and consists of ...

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According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (“CDC”), some individuals may experience post-COVID-19 conditions that involve a wide range of long-term health problems. Per the CDC, these post COVID-19 conditions may be known as “long COVID, long-haul COVID, post-acute COVID-19, long-term effects of COVID, or chronic COVID.” [1] These long-COVID symptoms can include:

  • Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
  • Tiredness or fatigue
  • Symptoms that get worse after physical or mental activities
  • Difficulty thinking or concentrating (sometimes referred to ...
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Last week, the National Labor Relations Board’s General Counsel directed the Regional Offices to adopt a hardline approach to settling unfair labor practice charges. When an employee or union files an unfair labor practice charge, the Regional office will conduct an investigation. This investigation generally does not allow the employer to see any statements or other evidence provided by the charging party or its witnesses, and, in fact, the employer may not even know the identity of the witnesses. Based on this investigation, and before any hearing, the Regional Office ...

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On August 28, 2021, Missouri joined the growing list of states with legislation aimed at protecting employees who experience domestic or sexual violence. Missouri’s Victims Economic Safety and Security Act (“VESSA”) applies to all employers with at least 20 employees. This new law provides unpaid leave and reasonable safety accommodations to employees who are victims of domestic or sexual violence or who have a family or household member who is a victim of domestic or sexual violence. It also requires employers to give notice of the new law to all current employees and ...

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Deja vu, all over again!!! Last week, the EEOC announced that the deadline to submit and certify 2019 and 2020 EE0-1 Component 1 Reports has been changed – for the umpteenth time. The NEW filing deadline is now Monday, October 25, 2021. And, the EEOC has said (again, as I recall) that this new deadline is the FINAL DEADLINE, that all eligible filers must submit data by this time, and that ”No additional changes to the filing deadline will be made.”  

While we should all take the EEOC at its word, the EEOC also said that this latest extension was due to the “continuing impact of the pandemic ...

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Remember back in May 2021 (May 13 to be exact!) when the CDC dropped bombshell recommendations which outlined what individuals could / could not do based on vaccination status?! Vaccinated individuals rejoiced that they could remove their masks inside and largely dispense with social distancing. Unvaccinated individuals were, of course, less enthused. At that time, OSHA guidance had been to not treat employees differently based on vaccination status. The agency fairly quickly pivoted, affixing this banner to the top of its website on May 18, 2021:  

“The Centers for Disease ...

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Yesterday, on July 27, 2021, the U.S. Center for Disease Control (CDC) issued new COVID-19 guidance, including recommending face masks even for vaccinated people when they are in indoor public settings in geographic areas with substantial or high COVID-19 transmission rates, as mapped from time to time by the CDC. The CDC:

  • Updated guidance for fully vaccinated people given new evidence on the degree to which the B.1.617.2 (Delta) variant is currently circulating in the United States and its high contagion factor.
  • Recommended that fully vaccinated people wear a mask in public ...
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