What should you do when a male employee claims his co-workers are sexually harassing him? You can’t just ignore the complaint simply because it came from a man. But should you discuss the complaint with the co-workers and ask them to stop if they are engaging in harassment? Wouldn’t that make matters worse?
Employees have to work at least 1,250 hours in the preceding year to be eligible for FMLA leave. If an employee requests leave to deal with a medical issue and is close to achieving that threshold, inform her. Maybe she can wait until she’s covered by the FMLA.
Public employees have the right to free speech and can’t be punished for exercising it. But that doesn’t mean they can say anything, anywhere. The exercise of free speech must concern a matter of public importance and not be done as part of the employee’s job.
No doubt you have been warned many times that the best way to avoid discrimination lawsuits involving discipline is to treat everyone alike. The assumption is that by always being fair and punishing the same behavior, rule violation or poor performance the same, no one can argue that they were demoted, suspended or fired because of their protected status. But there is a situation in which you can—and probably should—treat some employees more strictly as a class.
The 5th Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that settling a state court lawsuit over a noncompete agreement (with a payment and an agreement that supposedly included all employment claims) didn’t bar the former employees from suing for unpaid overtime that they claimed was owed to them under the Fair Labor Standards Act.
A federal judge has ordered the Houston-based United Bible Fellowship Ministries to pay a former employee nearly $75,000 in back pay and damages because of the nonprofit’s policy prohibiting pregnant employees from working and barring the hiring of pregnant women.
Not every action that may be interpreted as harassment actually is. That doesn’t mean employers should ignore a one-time incident or behavior brought to HR’s attention. You can and should end any behavior that may be perceived as offensive or harassing. Once you have, you can move on, as this recent Texas Supreme Court decision shows.
A new NLRB rule that will make it easier for unions to organize a work site has been upheld as a valid exercise of the NLRB’s regulatory authority.
In March, the Texas Senate passed legislation allowing holders of concealed handgun licenses to carry holstered handguns in plain view. In April, the Texas House of Representatives passed H.B. 910, its version of the “open carry” law.
Omaha, Nebraska-based Skinner Bakery will rehire six workers and pay more than $112,000 in back pay at its Paris, Texas, facility following a National Labor Relations Board ruling.