Employers with operations in Arizona should remember that the nation’s toughest state law on immigration goes into effect tomorrow. It appears that Arizona employers have been slow to get ready for the new law, so it will be interesting to see what happens during the first quarter of ’08. This is a law with real teeth. Will the state of Arizona allow them to bite? For a good summary of this law and the current state of affairs surrounding it, check out a recent article in the Arizona Republic.
This week’s tip is precipitated by thoughts of things that need to be done in the new year. I’m sure you’re having those same thoughts.
In Sunday’s Times, there’s an article written by Randall Stross and titled “How to Lose Your Job on Your Own Time.” It deals with an issue that’s becoming one of the hottest employment law issues going: Internet privacy. In particular, it deals with whether employers should be able to take what an employee (or a job applicant) has posted online, MySpace let’s say, and use it as a basis for firing or not hiring.
As this year draws to an end, what better to spend the last couple of days than trying to recall some weird ’07 workplace stories. Well, thanks to CareerBuilder.com, this is made easy by its list of weirdest workplace stories of the year. You might think of some weirder ones, but all of the ones listed by CareerBuilder.com are indeed pretty weird. Enjoy remembering.
Will executives never learn? If you must profess your love to a subordinate employee, just do it face-to-face, not by email. Texas’ most powerful prosecutor is in trouble because he chose the email way instead of the more personal way of communicating his love to his executive secretary. In a New York Times article, the prosecutor’s email professions of love are set forth in some detail.
In a recent post, I discussed the importance of background checks, focusing on the recent travails of a Wikipedia executive. We’re likely to see more emphasis on background checks from state and local governments, as well as law enforcement officials, as discussed in a recent article in the Washington Post.
On November 24, I did a post on the recent ruling from the National Labor Relations Board concerning employee email. As you may recall, this ruling says employers can ban employees’ use of company email for purposes of union solicitation if the employer’s policy prohibits solicitations involving other outside entities. Below is more analysis of this ruling from Miller & Martin.
Most employers have some type of Internet use policy that says, among other things, employees can’t use the Internet to view or download pornography, send offensive messages, and engage in other activity that could constitute harassment or other unlawful conduct. These policies usually provide that the employer has the right to monitor the email of employees and the way in which employees are using the Internet at work. Some employers conduct routine audits of computer and Internet use. Why? To make sure the policy is being complied with–and for another reason as well.
Dan Schwartz blogs about a reverse race discrimination case tried around the holidays. This case underscores at least two points: (1) employment cases can be unpredictable and expensive; and (2) trying an employment case around Christmas can be particularly troublesome for an employer. Giving someone a nice Christmas present can be tempting to a jury, if the jury thinks a wrong has been commited. The plaintiff in this case had only been denied a job, so the amount he was awarded is surprisingly high. Check out Dan’s blog.
Jon Hyman provides clarification on the new Equal Employment Opportunity Commission rule referred to in one of my previous posts today. He also provides a copy of the actual rule as well as Q&A from the EEOC. Check out his blog.
According to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, employers can distinguish between retiree health benefits for people below age 65 and above age 65. In fact, the EEOC says employers don’t have to provide retiree health benefits at all to individuals above age 65 who are eligible for Medicare. Check out an article in today’s Times.
“Insubordination” has long been an employment term that’s difficult to define. Ususally, however, it’s definition includes something about not doing what you’re told to do–disobeying an order. An editorial in the Washington Post tells an employment story that deals squarely with whether a firefighter’s quick decision to disobey an order from his supervisor is grounds for a two-day suspension.
Harry Truman was known as a man with a sharp tongue, keen wit, and undervalued (until more recently) wisdom. The latter characteristic is demonstrated by something he once said that seems to me to have a lot to do with one’s attitude and the impact it can have on so many things, including a job, a workplace, and the art of human resources.
Are they necessary? Yes, for certain jobs. Which ones? For a few jobs, state laws require background checks. For the most part, however, that’s largely a decision each company or organization must make for itself. Most would agree that jobs involving safety or security or financial responsibility would qualify.
We continue trying to take a YouTube humorous look at presidential candidates, a challenging task indeed. You may be happy to know we’re almost done with this phase of our presidential candidate review.