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A new ordinance went into effect April 4, 2016, which prohibits many employers in Austin from asking job applicants about their criminal histories until they’re well into the hiring process. The Fair Chance Hiring Ordinance, colloquially known as the “Ban the Box” measure, will forbid most employers from considering an applicant’s criminal record until after making a conditional offer of employment. Thus, Austin employers must evaluate whether the ordinance will affect their operations and, if so,…
Employers commonly use video surveillance for safety, security, loss prevention, and employee productivity monitoring. But employers’ legitimate business interests in protecting assets and safeguarding the workplace must be carefully balanced with employees’ reasonable expectations of privacy. As the definition of workplace privacy continues to develop, employers must be conscious of the evolving legal risks of workplace monitoring.…
The U.S. Supreme Court extended the whistle-blower protections provided in the Sarbanes-Oxley Act to include employees of privately held companies that are contractors or subcontractors of a public company.  The high court’s ruling in Lawson v. FMR LLC, marks a significant expansion of the statute and opens the door for claims of a new class of workers from roughly 5,000 public companies to potentially 6 million private ones, including even the smallest “Mom and…
The New Year is fast approaching and with it comes droves of college students seeking to trade their upcoming summer break for valuable on-the-job training.  This rite of passage has traditionally afforded prized experience and training for a student or recent grad, while allowing the employer to review the temperament and talents of the student to determine if she would be a cultural fit for possible future employment opportunities, and all-the-while, promoting the employer’s brand…
Members of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (“HELP”) approved the nomination of Richard Griffin, Jr. to serve as General Counsel of the NLRB by a 13-9 vote.  Griffin’s nomination will now proceed before the full senate for what is expected to be a contentious vote. Griffin was in the headlines last year as one of three President Obama recess appointments to the NLRB that sparked a political firestorm.   As reported here,…