Employment Law

Paid Family Leave Not a Reality for Most Employees

September 18, 2018 – Several Minnesota employers have recently expanded their employment benefit policies to include paid family leave to their employees who are new parents. But the reality is, only 13% of Americans have access to paid family leave benefits. And low-income workers, who make up nearly half of the U.S. workforce and are more often African-American or Latino, are the least likely to have access to these benefits.

Online Ads Screen Out Older Workers, Lawsuit Alleges

July 12, 2018 – More and more employers are using social media to target job applicants, in part due to the tools social media providers offer for targeted advertising. However, a recent lawsuit filed against some of the largest companies in the U.S. alleges that these companies are unlawfully targeting by age and excluding older workers. 

Pregnancy Discrimination Widespread in Corporate America

June 19, 2018 – Despite efforts by some companies to accommodate the needs of their pregnant employees, pregnancy discrimination and related retaliation in corporate American persists. A recent New York Times article reported that many of the country’s largest companies continue to penalize pregnant employees.

Minnesota Medical Marijuana Law Tested in BTJW Case Against Costco

May 3, 2018 – The Minnesota Cannabis Registry Program allows Chris Sonterre to lawfully treat his PTSD with medical marijuana. Yet, Costco denied him employment after he tested positive for cannabis during a pre-employment drug test. Sonterre has now sued Costco alleging the company discriminated against him and others for their participation in the registry and because of their disabilities. 

Target Settles Background Check Lawsuit

April 9, 2018 – Last Thursday, Target Corporation agree to settle a class action lawsuit brought on behalf of African American and Latino job applicants who sought employment with the company since 2006. The suit alleged that Target’s use of criminal background checks during the application process disproportionately impacted these job applicants nationwide.

Denied Long-Term Disability Benefits?

February 28, 2018 - If your employer provides private disability benefits, and you’ve suffered injuries or conditions outside the workplace that keep you from working, short and long-term disability benefits can be an important financial lifeline. However, insurance companies control these benefits and can make it challenging or impossible to get or keep them.

Hostile Workplace: When Does Harassment Become Unlawful?

January 25, 2018 – Nearly one-fifth of workers say they face a threatening or hostile workplace, according to a recent study by the Harvard Medical School, the University of California and the Rand Corporation. While state and federal employment laws protect employees from several forms of workplace harassment, not all comments or behaviors that are unwelcomed meet the legal definition of a hostile work environment.

NLRB Roles Back Contract Worker Protections

December 15, 2017 – Yesterday, the National Labor Retaliations Board overturned its 2015 decision in Browning-Ferris Industries, 362 NLRB No. 186 (2015), concerning joint-employer liability. In a 3-2 decision, the NLRB overruled a standard that had made it easier for workers to hold companies liable for questionable independent contractor, subcontractor and temporary employment agency working arrangements.

Witness Workplace Sexual Harassment?

November 16, 2017 – Victims of workplace sexual harassment often find it very difficult to report it. In fact, only one in four employees makes a report. Witnesses not only provide crucial support to victims, but they are instrumental in rooting out perpetrators and helping make the work environment safer for all employees. Many are surprised to learn the law protects witnesses, too.

Sexual Harassment at Work? What to Do

October 27, 2017 – Sexual harassment allegations against Harvey Weinstein, Roger Ailes, and Bill O’Reilly have helped bring workplace sexual harassment to the forefront of national discourse. Although reporting a sexual harasser is difficult, employees are entitled to work in an employment setting free of unlawful discrimination, retaliation and harassment, and calling out the conduct is an important first step toward addressing it.

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