November 6, 2004
Help with the New Overtime Rules
Earlier this year, the Labor Department’s new overtime rules took effect. The new rules mark the first update of the FLSA since 1975. As Catharine P. Taylor (Business Week) reports in Overtime Angst, while the new rules are simple in theory, application of them is already creating angst for employers. Importantly, Taylor’s story highlights that the Department of Labor has a fairly detailed website to help employers navigate through some of the complexities of the new rules. The site includes “video seminars, legal resources, and a list of district offices, whose staff can give ... a free phone or on-site consultation.”
The Impact of Long-Distance Caregiving on Workers
Miles Away: The MetLife Study of Long–Distance Caregiving
In a study released earlier this year, the National Alliance on Caregiving together with MetLife, suggests that the number of individuals who care for elderly family members from a distance is on the increase. The study reveals that long distance caregiving takes a heavy toll on employed workers who make major adjustments to their work schedules because of their caregiving obligations including “coming in late or leaving early, missing days of work, rearranging their work schedule and taking unpaid leave.” On average long distance caregivers miss 20 hours of week to attend to the needs of elderly relatives.
November 5, 2004
Labor and Employment Law Symposium
The firm of Seyfarth Shaw LLP is holding its 2004 Midwest labor and employment law symposium on November 10. The focus of the symposium is “Forty Years After Title VII: Where We Are and Where We Are Going.” The symposium will be held in Chicago at the Sheraton Chicago Hotel & Towers. Some of the workshop topics at the symposium include: Can ADA and FMLA Frustrations Be Cured; How Do Your Benefit Plans Stack Up for 2005?; Recent Developments in Employment Discrimination Law; Life Under the New FSLA Regulations: What We Have Learned and What Lies Ahead; The Changing Face of Unionization of America; Big Brother Is Watching - Balancing Business Needs and Workplace Privacy; Corporate Compliance and Social Responsibility, and The Proliferation of Class and Collective Actions - The Eight Figure Dilemma.
For additional information, please contact Meridith Fee at
Seyfarth Shaw LLP
55 East Monroe Street, Suite 4200
Chicago, IL 60603
Upcoming NLRB Labor Law Conference
The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), NJSBA Labor & Employment Law Section, the Rutgers University School of Management and Labor Relations, the New Jersey State AFL-CIO, and New Jersey Institute for Continuing Legal Education are holding the 26th Annual NLRB Labor Law Conference on November 12. Planned sessions include the following topics: Non Board Neutrality Agreements and Recognition; Access/No Solicitation Rules; Impact of Kentucky River - A discussion of supervisory status and ethical issues concerning ex parte communications; Construction industry/project labor agreements; and HIPAA. The Conference will be held at the Sheraton at Woodbridge Place in Iselin, NJ.
For more information contact:
New Jersey Institute for Continuing Legal Education
Phone: (732)214-8500 Fax: (732)249-0383
November 4, 2004
Researching Labor Arbitration and ADR
Professors Suzanne Thorpe and Laura Cooper announce their new and very useful, Researching Labor Arbitration and Alternative Dispute Resolution In Employment , a new annotated research guide to ADR in the Workplace. The guide, available on line here,
"lists sources that discuss arbitration and other means of employment dispute resolution in unionized and nonunionized settings. After identifying comprehensive bibliographies on these topics, the guide presents texts that dispute resolution practitioners consider to be essential reference tools. Sources that contain arbitration awards, sources that provide information about alternative dispute resolution professionals, and texts of procedure and ethics rules follow next. The last portion of the guide covers other texts, periodicals, and Web sites that offer additional commentary on arbitration, mediation, and other types of employment dispute resolution. Both hardcopy and electronic works are listed. In the interest of currency, with few exceptions, only monographs that have appeared since 1990 are included."
NBER's The Digest
The November issue of The Digest (NBER) includes the following articles.
Are Perks Really Managerial Excess?
The Changing Path to Corporate Leadership
Can Markets Predict the Future?
Do Hospital Report Cards Matter?
Did the ADA Reduce Employment of the Disabled?
The Digest is a monthly publication that summarizes at least four recent and newsworthy NBER Working Papers. Professional journalists write these summaries for a non-technical audience. The Bureau sends nearly 12,000 copies of the Digest each month to readers in government, business, universities, and the media. The NBER Digest is available in hard copy to the general public upon request.
Conference on Compensation for Executives and Directors
The ABA Joint Committee on Employee Benefits holds: The 19th Annual Institute on Compensation for Executives and Directors, Nov. 4-5 at the Plaza Hotel in New York.
November 3, 2004
Good news for federal employees
In Required Off-Duty Travel Will Soon Add Up to Comp Time, Stephen Barr (Washington Post) reports some good news for federal employees. According to Barr: "Federal employees will soon be allowed to claim time off for travel during off-duty hours, the Office of Personnel Management announced yesterday in a memo to agency heads."
The new benefits are part of the Federal Workforce Flexibility Act, which President Bush signed Oct. 30.
In addition to the traveling provisions, the law provide increase vacation days to members of the Senior Executive Service.
Sullivan on Disparate Impact
Charles A. Sullivan (Seton Hall) recently published "The World Turned Upside Down?: Disparate Impact Claims by White Males" in the Northwestern Law Review (vol. 98, page 1505).
In the article Professor Sullivan addresses two questions:
"As a matter of statutory interpretation, may a white (or a male) invoke disparate impact?" and "To the extent Title VII limits disparate impact to minorities or women, is it constitutional?"
Professor Sullivan reaches the following conclusions:
"Applying disparate impact beyond minorities and women is profoundly ahistorical and inconsistent with the theoretic underpinnings of the theory.
Applying disparate impact beyond minorities and women is also inconsistent with a basic policy underlying the antidiscrimination statutes--that employer prerogatives are to be left untouched to the maximum extent consistent with the remedial goals of the statute.
The language and legislative history of Title VII as amended by the Civil Rights Act of 1991 are consistent with limiting the theory to minorities and women, although neither compels that result. Despite these conclusions, limiting disparate impact to minorities and women cannot survive equal protection analysis."
Conference on Innovative Teaching in Human Resources and Industrial Relations
The SHRM Foundation; the Human Resources Division of the Academy of Management; the Society for Human Resource Management; and the Industrial Relations Research Association announces a call for papers for the fourth conference on Innovative Teaching in Human Resources and Industrial Relations. The conference, sponsored by Utah State University, will be held on March 31-April 2, 2005 at Park City, Utah.
Consistent with the desire to maintain high standards in terms of rigor and relevance in schools of business in the US and abroad, the goal of this conference is to provide a forum for discussing the latest ideas and demonstrating new methods and technologies for teaching. In addition to traditional research-based papers and panel discussions, demonstrations of new technologies, non-traditional presentations such as simulations, debates, round tables and other interactive sessions are also strongly encouraged.
Some topics that have been introduced in the past include:
* Teaching for professional competence
* Trends in curricula
* Developments in the use of the internet and web-based instruction
* Simulation-based teaching and other experiential methods
* Large-classroom strategies
* Innovations in classroom assessments
This list is intended to be suggestive. The conference will take an inclusive approach to both the subject matter and the content areas considered.
The best papers from the conference will be featured in a special issue of Human Resource Management Review, to be published in late 2005. In addition, abstracts will be featured in a Conference Proceedings.
Abstracts no longer than 5 pages of text, plus references, tables, and figures to be submitted to the conference organizer to be received by November 30th 2004.
For consideration for the special issue of Human Resource Management Review, complete papers must be submitted to the conference organizer no later than February 28th, 2005.
The conference will be held at the Park City Marriot Hotel, Park City Utah.
The late March, early April scheduling of the meeting means that participants should expect skiing opportunities in the mountain resorts while enjoying fine spring-like weather in the exciting town of Park City.
This is a great opportunity to renew old acquaintances as well as form new friendships in a scenic setting.
Queries should be addressed to the conference organizer:
James C. Hayton, PhD
Department of Management & Human Resources College of Business Utah State University
3555 Old Main Hill
Logan, UT 84322-3555
Phone: 435 797 1658
Fax: 435 797 1091
November 2, 2004
Analysis of 2004 Lame-Duck Congressional Session
Towers Perrin provides a description of the various labor and employment bills Congress will consider when it goes back into session next November 15.
Among the bills under consideration are:
S. 2975 (prohibiting DOL to implement new FLSA regulations regardgin overtime)
S. 313 (amending the FLSA to permit employees to choose to receive compensatory time-off in lieu of receiving cash overtime pay)
International Union Survey on Workplace Terrorist Attacks
The Paper, Allied-Industrial, Chemical and Energy Workers International Union (PACE) issues the findings of a study on Workplace Incident Prevention and Response Since 9/11. According to the report, "PACE sought to gain a better understanding of issues related to prevention of and preparedness for possible intentional incidents (i.e., terrorist attacks) at sites represented by its local unions. High vulnerability PACE-represented facilities were asked about issues and activities since the attacks of 9/11. Questions covered topics such as: vulnerability assessment, prevention, emergency response, training, and involvement of the local union, hourly workers and the community. This report details the findings of the survey."
Further attacks on WalMart
From yesterday's New York Times - States Are Battling Against Wal-Mart Over Health Care (REED BELSON). According to the article,
"Now, Wal-Mart finds itself under attack for what critics see as its miserly approach to employee health care, which they say is forcing too many of its workers and their families into state insurance programs or making them rely on charity care by hospitals."
November 1, 2004
Will Unions deliver for Kerry?
With the presidential election so close, will labor unions play a significant role in delivering a victory for the democratic candidate?
The Horserace at MSNBC gives Kerry 207 solid or leaning electoral votes and Bush 222 solid or leaning electoral votes, with 9 states (109 electoral votes) as "toss ups".
The "toss-up" states are (unionization rates in parentheses):
New Hampshire (9.3)
New Mexico (7.6)
Five of the 9 toss-up state (Minnesota, Nevada, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin) have unionization rates above the national average (12.9%) (Union affiliation of employed wage and salary workers by state). These five states represent 66 electoral votes. If these 5 states with above average unionization rates go for Kerry, Kerry will get 273 electoral votes and a victory on November 2.
Courses in Dispute Resolution
The courses are open to law and dispute resolution students and others interested in professional level education in conflict management, the program features nationally recognized faculty in the spectacular coastal environment of Pepperdine University in Malibu, California. Courses include: Negotiation and Settlement Advocacy; Mediation Seminar; Communication and Conflict; International Commercial Arbitration; Domestic Relations Dispute Resolution; Selected Issues in Integrating the Internet into Dispute Resolution; Advanced Trial Practice; Course Schedule.
October 31, 2004
Report on Immigration and Labor Market Trends
A new report from the Center of Immigration Studies paints a complex picture of the effect of immigration in U.S. labor markets. In Immigrant Gains and Native Losses, author Steven A. Camarota, finds that:
"The recovery from the recession of 2001 has been described as “jobless.” In fact, an analysis of the latest Census Bureau data shows that between March of 2000 and March of 2004, the number of adults working actually increased, but all of the net change went to immigrant workers. The number of adult immigrants (18 years of age and older) holding a job increased by over two million between 2000 and 2004, while the number of adult natives holding a job is nearly half a million fewer. This Backgrounder also finds that the number of adult natives who are unemployed or who have withdrawn from the labor force is dramatically higher in 2004 than it was in 2000. These findings raise the possibility that immigration has adversely Affected the job prospects of native-born Americans."
Thanks to Joe Hodnicki for the tip.
Jolls on the ADA
Christine Jolls (Harvard, NBER) has posted, "Identifying the Effects of the Americans with Disabilities Act Using State-Law Variation: Preliminary Evidence on Educational Participation Effects" in SSRN. Here is the abstract:
The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) broadly prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability in employment and other settings. Several empirical studies have suggested that employment levels of individuals with disabilities declined rather than increased after the ADA's passage. This paper provides a first look at whether lower disabled employment levels after the ADA might have resulted from increased participation in educational opportunities by individuals with disabilities as a rational response to the ADA's employment protections. The main empirical finding is that individuals with disabilities who were not employed in the years following legal innovation in the form of the ADA were more likely than their pre-ADA counterparts to give educational participation as their reason for not being employed. This preliminary evidence suggests the value of further study, with better education data, of the relationship between the ADA's enactment and disabled participation in educational opportunities.