The U.S. Department of Labor released the final new rules on Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA)* overtime standards this week. While HR professionals have been talking about this behind closed doors for about a year now, there wasn't much public buzz about it … until now; it's making a much more public splash on the Today Show and NPR, to name a few. But what is this law, how does it work, and how does it impact you?
Around 5,000 different fragrances permeate our personal care products. What smells clean and fresh to one person is a harbinger of an allergy attack for someone with fragrance sensitivity, which can result in sneezing, headaches, skin reactions, even difficulty breathing. Antihistamines can help, but the best treatment is reducing exposure. The question is, how far does your employer have to go to accommodate your condition?
Technology moves faster than law. As a result, the era of social media has been a tricky one for workers' rights. Various state and federal courts have settled questions about whether employers can ask their employees for access to their accounts and whether complaining about work on social networks counts as collective bargaining. The latest frontier in social media-related employment law: mandating that workers maintain social media accounts in the first place.
Most workers have probably heard of FMLA, but how many really understand what it means, in terms of rights and limitations? Worse, a lot of employers don't know where the line is. In this week's roundup, Alison Green advises an Ask a Manager reader on what he can expect from FMLA. Plus, we learn why high school students should learn how to use social media, and how job hopping can be good (or very bad) for your career.
Hot on the heels of the recent Supreme Court decision against Amazon workers, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court just upheld the 2007 judgment for $188 million against Wal-Mart Stores, in Braun v. Wal-Mart Stores. The class action suit affects 187,000 workers, who worked for the company between 1998 to 2006, and centers around Michelle Braun and other Wal-Mart employees, who claimed that they were not compensated for working off-the-clock, as well as through meals and breaks.
More than two-thirds of Americans over the age of 20 are overweight, according to the CDC, but prevalence doesn't mean acceptance. The professional world in particular discriminates against overweight workers, especially if those workers are female. A new study from Vanderbilt University found that overweight women were less likely to work in public-facing jobs, and suffered a severe wage penalty for weighing more than "normal" weight (as determined by the BMI, itself a controversial measuring stick).
Today, in an op-ed in BloombergBusinessweek, Apple CEO Tim Cook officially came out: "While I have never denied my sexuality, I haven't publicly acknowledged it either, until now. So let me be clear: I'm proud to be gay, and I consider being gay among the greatest gifts God has given me."
You're excited about your new offer. It's with a good company and in your field of interest. You just need to sign a few documents here, a few contract forms there, and you're ready for a new beginning. But there's this one other document, a non-compete agreement, which you stumble upon just as you're getting ready to turn in all your forms. What does it mean if you sign, and what can you do to protect yourself?
While some people are now obtaining health insurance through other means under the Affordable Care Act, most Americans still get their coverage through their employer. As the cost of health insurance premiums continues to rise, more insurers and employers are beginning to offer wellness incentive programs. The general idea is that if you participate in a wellness program, you pay a lower premium. The program is supposed to increase your wellness, decreasing the cost of your medical expenses and thus the cost of your insurance. But now the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is cracking down on some wellness programs that have gone from being voluntary to involuntary.
Seattle's new minimum wage of $15 per hour is more than twice the current federal minimum wage of $7.25. Some say businesses will suffer and employers will be unable to hire workers. Franchise owners in Seattle have an additional gripe: many are claiming that franchises are unfairly grouped under the umbrella of large businesses.