Week In Review

March 21, 2016

NLRB, Social Media, and the Right to Complain
The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has held that Chipotle Mexican Grill violated the law when it forced an employee to delete certain posts on his Twitter account. The employee tweeted complaints about having to work on snow days and about the hourly wage. When the employee was reminded of the employer’s policy regarding social media and was asked to remove the posts, the employee removed the posts. The NLRB concluded that the employee’s tweets qualified as group complaints, as opposed to gripes that only affected him, and were protected under the National Labor Relations Act.

Tennessee May Require E-Verify
The Tennessee Lawful Employment Act is on its way to the Senate floor. The proposed legislations would require employers with 50-200 employees to enroll in E-Verify when hiring.

Wyoming Allows Private Employers to Use Veterans’ Preference
Wyoming has enacted legislation providing for permissive private employer hiring preference for veterans and spouses of disabled and deceased veterans. The granting of a preference based on a person's status as a veteran or spouse of a disabled or deceased veteran shall not be considered a discriminatory or unfair employment practice under local or state equal employment opportunity law, provided the granting of the preference is not based in any manner on consideration of a characteristic, attribute or category enumerated in state law as constituting a discriminatory or unfair employment practice. The law will take effect July 1, 2016.

Pasadena and Santa Monica, California Adopt Minimum Wage
The Pasadena City Council and the Santa Monica City Council have adopted minimum wage ordinances to increase the minimum wage to $10.50 per hour effective July 1, 2016. The minimum wage would then increase to $12.00 per hour on July 1, 2017, and to $13.25 per hour on July 1, 2018.

2017 H-1B Petitions Accepted April 1
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has announced that on April 1 it will begin accepting H-1B petitions subject to the fiscal year 2017 cap. Through the H-1B program, U.S. businesses are able to employ foreign workers in occupations that require highly specialized knowledge in fields such as science, engineering, and computer programming. The congressionally mandated cap on H-1B visas for FY 2017 is 65,000. USCIS said that because it expects to receive more than 65,000 petitions during the first five business days of this year’s program, it will monitor the number of petitions received and notify the public when the H-1B cap has been met. If the agency receives an excess of petitions during the first five business days, it will use a computer-generated lottery system to randomly select the number of petitions required to meet the cap.

SESCO recommends that clients review all applicable policy and practices to ensure compliance. For assistance, contact us at 423-764-4127 or by email at sesco@sescomgt.com