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  • Woman Denied Lactation Room and Fired Is Not Getting Trial

    "I think it's best you go home and be with your babies" is not what an employee expects to hear upon returning to work after maternity leave. Unfortunately, it is exactly what Angela Ames heard when she requested access to a lactation room to express breast milk. Ms. Ames filed to sue for sexual discrimination, but has been denied access to a trial. The details will make any reasonable person's head spin.

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  • Should Your Internship Be Paid?

    Getting that coveted internship is an exciting time for any graduate student on her way toward graduation and professional employment. Sometimes an internship is a valuable training experience that readies the student for real-world challenges in her field; other times, it is the equivalent of feudal serfdom. Internships can be unpaid, and as such are subject to strict laws and boundaries under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA.) Spot the warning signs and tell the difference between true professionals who are willing to help train you, and unscrupulous employers who simply want to take advantage of slave labor.

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  • President Obama Wants YOU to Receive Overtime Pay

    Good news coming down the pike for the millions of American workers who have been exempted from overtime pay. The New York Times reports that tomorrow, Thursday, March 13, President Obama will direct the federal Department of Labor to stop classifying a series of jobs as "professional" or "executive." How will this affect you?

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  • Those Unpaid Security Screenings Might Not Be Legal

    Does your employer require you to go through a security screening before you go on the clock? If so, they might be breaking the law -- but if they are, they're not alone. Employees who work for companies that require security screenings often are not compensated for time spent being screened. Just a few years ago, groups of employees started filing suit against their employers for wage theft. Their basic argument was, of course, that they should be compensated for time given to the employer. If you are ever expected to give up your time without being compensated, here is what you need to know.

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  • Employer Access to Social Media Accounts: What Does Your State Say?

    The National Conference of State Legislatures (NCLS) keeps tabs on what's new in each of the 50 states. Beginning in 2012, some state lawmakers introduced legislation protecting employees from being required to give up their social media account passwords in order to get or keep a job. And some states included laws preventing colleges and universities from requiring student passwords.
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  • Pentagon Food Service Workers Allege Illegal Retaliation for Strike Against Contractor Employer

    Recently, The Huffington Post reported that food service workers in the Pentagon filed a complaint against their private-sector employer. They say that they were illegally retaliated against in response to asserting their right to protest for better working conditions.
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  • Are Prevailing Wage Laws Discriminatory?

    If you work as a contractor on projects with federal funding, prevailing wage laws may be pertinent to your rate of pay. An opinion piece published in the Albuqurque Journal makes the argument that "prevailing wage" laws are discriminatory. Understand what these laws say and how they affect you.
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  • What You Need to Know About Your Employer's Social Media Policy and the Law

    The National Law Review recently reported that the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) reached a settlement with Georgia-Pacific over their social media policy. This is big for just about anybody who works. As always, the law is trying to catch up with changes in technology and society. The details of this case help inform employees and their employers which businesses may and may not regulate regarding employees' personal use of social media.

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  • In One Job, at Least, a Legal Right to Nap

    Over 1,000 garbage truck drivers in Los Angeles are $15,000 richer this week, after the City Council opted to settle a class action suit that claimed drivers were improperly prevented from napping during their half-hour lunch break. Their attorney argued that by not allowing the drivers to catch some Zzzs on the job, the city demanded they remain "on duty," even when resting. The total payout was $26 million dollars.

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  • Worker's Compensation Might Not Cover You

    The devil is in the details. Many workers arrive at work ready to do a good job in return for compensation, plus their employer's attention to their health and safety on the job. How a state frames worker's compensation laws, however, may leave injured workers without benefits.
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  • 3 Things Employers Won't Tell You About Social Media

    By now, we've all heard stories about people being fired for their social media use, either because they got caught tweeting on the company time, or because they said something outside of work, that tarnished their employer's brand. But there's more to the perils of social media than just saying the wrong thing at the wrong time. Here's what your employer knows about social media that might surprise you.
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  • Wisconsin and the 7-Day Work Week

    Governor of Wisconsin Scott Walker has bragged that his state went from the 43rd best state in which to do business to the 17th during his tenure.That is a big improvement over the course of four short years. While business owners in Wisconsin may be enjoying an improved environment, we must ask what makes Wisconsin business-friendly, and whether those traits create an unfriendly environment for workers or residents. In the long run, what is bad for employees may also be bad for business.
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  • Your Favorite Football Team Might Be Guilty of Wage Theft

    Whether you're a fan of the Raiders or some other football team, the abuses alleged in the recent class-action lawsuit filed in Alameda County Superior Court may be more common than the football industry cares to admit. The suit alleges not only the usual wage theft violations such as no overtime pay, but a laundry list of patronizing and insulting, not to mention illegal, requirements that would cause any feminist to wonder at our lack of progress over the last century.
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  • Stop Complaining About Being Overworked, Unless You Live in One of These 5 Countries

    Americans may think they’re being overworked, but a new study shows that they’re just being a bunch of wimps compared to professionals in these five nations.
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  • Who Wants to Raise the Minimum Wage? The Answer May Surprise You

    Is raising the federal minimum wage rate beneficial to the economy or not? We'll take a look at who's for and against raising the wage and how level of education affects people's opinions.
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  • Should Workplace Bullying Be Illegal?

    A great quote from a practicing lawyer is, "It is not illegal to be an unlikeable jerk." In Australia, newly crafted workplace bullying laws might just limit some jerkiness. The United State of America does not currently address workplace bullying, determine whether the behavior itself is illegal, or provide any sanctions or penalties. Should we?

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  • Does Your Employer Respect Your Rights as a Breastfeeding Mother?

    The Affordable Care Act (ACA) gives working mothers rights so they can pump milk and breastfeed their children. These rights went into effect in 2010. Unfortunately, many employers behave as if these rights do not exist. In addition, the law lacks teeth; there is not much in the way of enforcement at this time. The growing numbers of working mothers filing suit against their employers may, with any luck, have an effect upon how nursing mothers are treated at work.
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  • What You Need to Know Before Becoming a Whistleblower

    Wouldn't it be lovely if employers rewarded employees for helping to ensure that business is in compliance with the law? Unfortunately, too many employers would rather not spend the money to keep up with health and safety standards, or be caught when they are guilty of wage theft. In other words, your boss might consider whistleblowers a nuisance.

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  • The Problem With 'Do What You Love'

    Do what you love, and you'll never work a day in your life, the saying goes. Of course, no one is really sure who said it. Attributions on the internet range from Confucius to Martina Navratilova. But the more important question is, can we really expect to do what we love, in today's world -- and should we?

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  • We Are Free to Exploit You

    Those who would like to dismantle labor unions are on the attack. As more states consider enacting right to work laws, people on both sides of the argument are disseminating information and misinformation in an attempt to rally others to their cause. It's too easy to lose sight of the forest for the trees. It's good to know who is behind efforts to disable unions and what their full agenda is.
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