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Policies / Handbooks

Ensure harassment reporting policy is clear

01/31/2018

If you require employees to report alleged harassment, you have some legal protection if you take prompt action to stop the misconduct. However, if the reporting process is confusing, contradictory or otherwise ineffective, it may not benefit you at all.

M, F or X: How to deal with ‘nonbinary’ genders

01/23/2018

Some HR professionals are facing a new record-keeping hurdle: employees who identify as “nonbinary”—that is, neither male or female.

Using GPS to monitor staff? Know legal risks and 5 best practices

01/18/2018

With the rise in GPS technology, employers have unprecedented access to their employees’ whereabouts. However, before an employer begins using GPS to monitor employees, it should consider the related legal ramifications and employee privacy issues.

Court: Drug testing is not an inherent invasion of employee privacy

01/02/2018

Employers can drug test employees as part of a safety program. The mere existence of a properly designed testing program does not invade a worker’s right to privacy.

Enforce rules fairly and even-handedly, document any differences in discipline

01/02/2018

Good employers discipline everyone who violates work rules, without regard for protected characteristics. That may seem obvious, but sometimes supervisors get sloppy and decide that a particular employee should be punished for a violation another employee got away with.

The NLRB strikes back: 4 big pro-employer moves

12/18/2017
In a flurry of decisions in recent days, the National Labor Relations Board reversed years of pro-employee labor rulings that employers opposed. Business groups cheered the decisions, saying they’ll bring much-needed balance to employer-employee relationships. Three key decisions, rendered on Dec. 14 and 15, overturned a string of pro-worker, pro-union NLRB rulings. All were timed […]

Essentia Healthcare fires 50 staff for refusing flu shots

12/18/2017

Citing the risk to patients at its 15 hospitals and 75 clinics, Essentia required employees to get vaccinated or provide documentation substantiating medical or religious objections to the inoculations.

Under siege on social media? Choose words carefully when responding

12/18/2017

If an aggrieved employee launches a social media campaign against your organization, it can be hard to figure out how to respond. However, you can defend yourself. If it’s worded carefully, your response won’t add fuel to the legal fire that comes in the wake of an employee’s lawsuit.

A matter of balance: Medical marijuana, the ADA and drug testing

12/04/2017

In Pennsylvania, case law says employers should balance an employee’s privacy interests against the need for random drug testing.

Routinely log phone calls coming into HR

12/04/2017

HR professionals should document all phone calls received from applicants or employees and include a brief summary of the outcome. That way, should someone later claim no one answered or returned a phone call, you have a way to counter the allegation.