November 2018 Newsletter

If the "humble boss" is best, who's the worst? Sue Shellenbarger, the work and family columnist for The Wall Street Journal, wrote this week that the "in" characteristic for leaders right now is humility. (Paid subscription required for full access.) "Humility" includes traits such as respecting the input of others, recognizing that people at all levels make valuable contributions, and being willing to admit to mistakes and accept...
In the waning days of his final term of office and on the last possible day under the legislative calendar, on September 30, 2018, California Governor Jerry Brown signed a trio of bills into law that should have a dramatic effect on the ability of workers to bring claims for harassment and discrimination in the workplace. The new legislation makes it significantly more difficult for employers to resolve such claims, either by way of settlement...
Last week, the EEOC released preliminary data on sexual harassment claims for its 2018 fiscal year. The report (not surprisingly) shows an eye-popping rise in sexual harassment claims and enforcement activity – a trend acting EEOC chair Victoria Lipnic anticipates will continue for a while. Even for employers not affected by New York and New York City’s sweeping sexual harassment prevention laws, or other new state or local laws, the EEOC...
We have an employee who recently had a child placed with her for foster care. (It is her niece.) She wants to take eight weeks of FMLA leave to bond with the foster child, but wants to know if she can take an additional eight weeks of FMLA leave when she adopts the child. She anticipates that the adoption likely will occur sometime next year. A. My head is spinning, as there are a couple of potential issues here.  First, is this an actual...
Not sure where you stand on this, but I’m always game for a good employer smack down on FMLA abuse. This smack down comes courtesy of the City of Chicago. You know, the City of Big Shoulders, the Second City (to no one), the Windy City [little known fact: the nickname “Windy City” comes not from the cold winds that blow off Lake Michigan but from the City’s “windy” politicians. No joke.]. I digress. Picture a 911 call...
Darrell Patterson had worked in Walgreens' 24/7 call center for six years without incident. He claims Walgreens fired him for skipping an emergency training session held on a Saturday. He's a Seventh-day Adventist, and it's against his religion to work on the Sabbath (from sundown Friday through downs Saturday). Until his firing, they had worked cooperatively to schedule around this religious prohibitions, without incident. Patterson's religion...