Legislative Developments

Almost one year ago, the #MeToo Movement took us by storm when men and women across the country began speaking out about their experiences of sexual harassment and abuse. Countless lawsuits have been filed, hundreds of stories have been told, and multiple public figures have been brought down since the #MeToo Movement’s rise on social and public media. In the midst of all of the controversy, many state legislatures and state agencies have taken affirmative steps toward minimizing sexual harassment in the workplace.

For instance, on August 29, 2018, Delaware joined Connecticut and three other states when it adopted a law requiring covered employers to train their employees in sexual harassment prevention. Basically, the law introduces a mandate on employers with 50 or more employees to train all employees–supervisors or not–in sexual harassment prevention. The law institutes broad protections, and lumps in unpaid interns, applicants, and apprentices into the definition of an “employee.” In addition, the new legislation obligates employers with four or more employees to issue an information sheet on sexual harassment prevention to their employees. The law will become effective on January 9, 2018.

New York has also beefed up its protections against sexual harassment. Effective October 9, 2018, New York employers will all be required to adopt a policy against sexual harassment in the workplace. Employers have two options: they can (1) adopt a model policy issued by the state or (2) adopt their own policy that either meets or exceeds the standards set forth in the model policy. Recently, the New York State Division of Human Rights, a state agency that enforces the state’s discrimination laws, issued draft guidance on mandatory sexual harassment prevention policies and training to assist employers in their compliance with the new law.…

In its 2018 session, the General Assembly passed a number of new laws affecting employers. Except as otherwise noted, the changes are effective October 1, 2018. The following material summarizes these new laws, but the specific provisions should be reviewed in the context of specific situations. These new statutes are available online through the…

Over the weekend, the General Assembly approved a bill prohibiting employers, including the state and its political subdivisions, from asking, or directing a third-party to ask, about a prospective employee’s wage and salary history.

The measure now moves to the Governor’s office for his signature.

The prohibition does not apply in two situations:

  • if the

Last week, the federal government passed its new budget proposal, which included an amendment of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) to protect the rights of tipped workers. Prior to this law, tip sharing rules were governed by DOL wage and hour regulations.

The new law is in direct opposition to a proposed Department of…

The Trump administration has already reversed or changed several positions taken by the Department of Labor (DOL) under the Obama administration. That trend continues with the DOL’s announcement of the forthcoming Payroll Audit Independent Determination (PAID) program, which will provide employers with an important opportunity to work with the DOL’s Wage and Hour Division (WHD)…

For those of you with employees in Massachusetts, you need to be aware of two significant changes with respect to pay equity and pregnancy accommodations.  These changes also serve as a reminder to employers that they need to stay focused on disseminating and enforcing policies on harassment of all kinds.

On April 1, 2018, the…

On Tuesday, May 23rd, the Connecticut House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed a measure that would greatly expand the already broad anti-discrimination provision that exist under Connecticut law.  The bill, House Bill 6668, would make several substantive changes to the protections including defining what is a “reasonable accommodation” instead of leaving that determination open.…