Human Resources

HR In Aggregate: Top HR News

Arizona Cities Expand Discrimination Protections

Arizona recently expanded provisions of the Arizona Civil Rights Act (ACRA) to cover pregnancy and pregnancy-related conditions. Additionally, following a national trend in response to perceived state and federal inaction, cities in Arizona on their own passed new ordinances that expands protected categories and coverage. Learn More

Maine’s Highest Court Finds Portland Hazard Pay Ordinance Constitutional, But Not Effective Until 2022

Employers in Portland, Maine received long-awaited clarity Tuesday regarding a November 2020 voter referendum raising the city’s minimum wage and instituting hazard pay during states of emergency such as the COVID-19 pandemic. On July 6, 2021, the Maine Supreme Judicial Court unanimously ruled in Portland Regional Chamber of Commerce v. City of Portland that the voter-initiated legislation establishing an emergency minimum wage was constitutional but does not take effect until January 1, 2022. The ruling means that at least until next year, employers in Maine’s largest city must abide only by the state’s current minimum wage of $12.15 per hour and do not have to pay hazard wages of 1.5 times that rate. Learn More

Littler Lightbulb: Colorado Adds New Employment Laws this Session

Over the last two years, Colorado enacted some significant employment laws, including the Healthy Families & Workplaces Act and Equal Pay for Equal Work Act. Colorado’s 2021 legislative session ended on June 12, 2021. This Lightbulb highlights two more recently enacted employment laws. Learn More

The Dust Hasn’t Settled Yet: Employers Must Continue to Be Thoughtful About Criminal Record Screening Policies

Last month, the new chair of the EEOC, Charlotte A. Burrows, was the keynote speaker at a conference regarding new research on criminal recidivism. The EEOC has been mostly quiet on the topic of criminal background checks and Title VII since the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit upheld an order enjoining the EEOC from enforcing its Enforcement Guidance against the State of Texas. Chair Burrows’ comments reveal the EEOC remains keenly interested in this subject. But this is just one of the reasons why employers, particularly those operating in multiple jurisdictions with a high concentration of entry-level jobs, must continue to be thoughtful about criminal record screening policies. The other reasons include the risk of disparate impact class actions by the plaintiff’s bar, regulatory actions by local fair employment agencies, and increased claims activity by individual plaintiffs, particularly in California and New York. And these concerns fall against the backdrop of widespread class actions under the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act. Learn More

As Colorado and Virginia Follow California’s Lead in Enacting Data Privacy Laws, Employers Must Start Planning to Address an Inevitable Trend

With the enactment of the Colorado Privacy Act on July 7, 2021, Colorado now joins Virginia in transforming the first major state privacy law, the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), from an outlier into what now appears to be the beginning of an inevitable trend. Employers must start addressing this trend not just because the CCPA and its upcoming successor, the California Privacy Rights Act (CPRA), apply to the personal information of individuals in the employment context (HR data), but also because more states are poised to follow suit. Learn More



Lisa Smith, SPHR, SHRM – SCP

Certified EEO Investigator (EEOC)

Lead Support and Content Chief – HelpDeskforHR.com

“You cannot be audit-proof, but you can Be Audit-Secure.”

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