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The following is a wake-up call to all employers, especially those in the health care industry, that have adopted “zero tolerance policies.” These policies will increasingly butt up against the tidal wave of laws legalizing the medical and recreational use of marijuana.  In a just-decided case, a federal judge in Connecticut issued a ruling in favor of a medical marijuana user whose offer of employment at a nursing home was rescinded after she tested positive…
If your company: sells goods or services to the federal government; or sells goods or services to companies that use those goods or services in the products they sell to the federal government, you need to read this article. If you have human resource management responsibility, and you do not know to whom your company sells its products, it is time for you to obtain that information. If you discover that your company does sell…
Since dues are the lifeblood of all labor unions, it wouldn’t be surprising to find the leadership of the American labor movement singing a refrain from a 1960’s protest song: “my friend . . . we’re on the eve of destruction.” As was widely expected, on Wednesday, June 27, 2018, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its long-anticipated decision in Janus v. American Federation of State County and Municipal Employees No 16-1466. In outlawing mandatory…
The Trump administration’s mark is certainly evident at the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) and health care employers are breathing a sigh of relief. The NLRB is a five member Board that decides cases governing most aspects of private sector labor relations in the health care industry.  The manner in which Board members’ terms are staggered allows a sitting President to eventually place three of the five members from his own political party. In fact,…
As explained in this companion article, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) gave employers an early holiday gift with its reversal of the Obama-era joint employer test. But the Board had even more holiday cheer to spread to employers.  On December 14, it overruled its 2003 decision in Lutheran Heritage Village – Livonia.…
On September 25 the U.S. Senate confirmed the nomination of William Emanuel to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). This quickly followed the previous confirmation of Marvin Kaplan, thus bringing a full complement to the five-member panel. More significantly for employers, and consistent with long-standing precedent, the sitting president of the United States appoints three members from his political party. Thus as of September 25 the NLRB is composed of three Republicans and two Democrats.…
A recent unanimous decision by the highest state court in Massachusetts sends a warning signal to employers in all states. Marijuana in the workplace is a complex and unsettled legal issue that will require all employers to navigate a veritable minefield.  Even if you are in a state other than Massachusetts, this recent case may provide important guidance for employers facing the legal specter of pot in the workplace.…
The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) is a federal law that was enacted to ensure protection of individuals’ protected health information (PHI). The Standards for Privacy of Individually Identifiable Health Information (Privacy Rule) issued by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services established detailed national standards for the protection of PHI.  In general, HIPAA protects individuals from the unauthorized use or disclosure any PHI.…