NLRB Hands Employers a Win (Seriously!): GPS Tracking of Employee Upheld


It is no surprise that the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has been busy this summer establishing several principles that are frightening to employers. But in an unexpected turn of events, the NLRB Office of the General Counsel, Division of Advice, recently handed management a win. The Board held that installation of a GPS tracking system on an employee’s company vehicle did not require bargaining with a union because it was not a “material, substantial, and significant” change. Continue reading this entry

A Prompt Response to a Harassment Complaint Can Be the Difference Between Liability and No Liability


A recent federal district court from Illinois graphically demonstrates the benefits of a prompt response when an employer receives an internal harassment complaint from an employee. In this case, a female employee complained that two male employees had harassed her. She claimed that a coworker constantly harassed her starting in September 2010 and continuing into 2011, by doing such things as talking about the size of his genitals and wanting to have sex with her. She also alleged that one of her supervisors harassed her by making a number of suggestive comments to her. She claimed the supervisor’s conduct started sometime between June 2010 and March 2011. Continue reading this entry

Employers Need to Consider Accommodation Requests Made at Any Time During a Disabled Employee’s Employment


Can an employer simply ignore a request by a disabled employee for an accommodation made in a meeting that could lead to the employee’s termination? A recent federal case from Wisconsin says no. In the case, the former employee, who is legally deaf, was employed as a sales associate in a national retail store. A confrontation between the employee and two store managers, occurring during a meeting in which the employee requested an accommodation related to his participation in the meeting, led to the employee’s termination. Continue reading this entry

Health Conscious? The EEOC Is Expanding Incentives for Employees’ Spouses


Employee wellness programs are frequently a source of ulcer-causing angst for employers, but the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is making moves to treat some of the underlying issues. Late last week, the EEOC issued a proposed rule to amend Title II of the Genetic Information Non-Discrimination Act of 2008 (GINA) that would “allow employers who offer wellness programs as part of group health plans to provide limited financial and other inducements … in exchange for an employee’s spouse providing information about his or her current or past health status.” On its face this may appear to be a minor issue, but in reality, this change helps employers avoid inadvertently violating GINA’s broad employee protections. Continue reading this entry

November Is Coming: Voting and Other Leaves


The leaves are changing, and the air is turning cooler. While employers are gearing up for fall, voting leave may be far from their minds. After all, even though the presidential candidates are in full swing campaign mode, the “real” election is over a year away, right? As an employer, I can rest easy not worrying about pesky voting affecting my employees. Not so fast. While the “big” presidential election is still a year away, employers must be mindful of smaller elections that take place across the state and municipal levels. And, these elections are not just held in November. Continue reading this entry