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OSHA COVID-19 Emergency Temporary Standard Effective, With Enforcement Delays

After releasing an Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) for COVID-19 for healthcare employers on June 10, 2021, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has announced that it is publishing the ETS in the Federal Register on June 21, 2021. The publication gives the ETS immediate effect, but most elements of the ETS will not be enforceable for 14... Continue Reading
June 21, 2021

New York Updates COVID-19 Guidance Including Daily Health Screening Requirements

On June 8, 2021, New York State updated the NY Forward Guidance for several industries, including office-based and food services employers, with changes that many people feel are overdue. In addition to incorporating updated mask, physical distancing, and capacity rules that have been in place since New York adopted the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention... Continue Reading
June 9, 2021

Connecticut Adds Additional Protections for Breastfeeding Workers

Governor Ned Lamont has signed into law additional protections for breastfeeding workers.  Connecticut law already requires all employers to “make reasonable efforts to provide a room or other location, in close proximity to the work area, other than a toilet” where an employee can express milk in private and also prohibits discrimination or retaliation against... Continue Reading
June 9, 2021

Montana Will Protect Off-Duty Use of Marijuana Next Year

Montana Governor Greg Gianforte signed legislation on May 18, 2021 that will provide protections for off-duty use of marijuana starting on January 1, 2022. Montana citizens voted to legalize recreational marijuana in November 2020. The ballot initiative did not provide employment-related protections and focused on employer restrictions of on-duty use of the drug.  The newly-signed...… Continue Reading
June 8, 2021

Incentives: From Water Bottles to “Not so Substantial”

For years (and I do mean years), the EEOC has waffled about whether incentives were permissible in connection with a medical inquiry under a voluntary wellness program.  Friday, the EEOC issued its most recent pronouncement on the topic, this time related to incentives for COVID-19 vaccinations. The ADA prohibits employers from requiring medical examinations or... Continue Reading
June 1, 2021

EEOC UPDATES ITS GUIDANCE ON VACCINATIONS

Just as you may have been preparing to settle into a relaxing Memorial Day Weekend, the EEOC issued additional informal guidance today concerning COVID-19 vaccination issues. Although there are still many holes to be filled, and employers continue to be left with incomplete guidance, here are some initial highlights and observations: MANDATING THE VACCINE •... Continue Reading
May 28, 2021

Montana Makes Vaccination Status a Protected Class

Discrimination based on vaccination status is prohibited under a new Montana law (House Bill 702). Enacted on May 7, 2021, the new law went into effect immediately. The new law provides that employers, including governmental entities, are prohibited from refusing employment to a person or discriminating against a person in compensation or in a term,... Continue Reading
May 28, 2021

FMCSA Issues Reminder To CDL Drivers Regarding Use Of CBD Products

The U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration issued a “Clearinghouse Update” on May 27, 2021 reminding commercial motor vehicle drivers who are regulated by the FMCSA that they should exercise caution when considering whether to use hemp and cannabidiol (CBD) products.  Specifically, the update stated that it is important for all employees...… Continue Reading
May 27, 2021

Alabama Enacts Medical Marijuana Law

Alabama Governor Kay Ivey signed legislation legalizing medical cannabis on May 17, 2021. Known as the Darren Wesley “Ato” Hall Compassion Act, the law permits the use of medical cannabis to treat certain medical conditions including Crohn’s disease, depression, epilepsy, HIV/AIDs, panic disorder, Parkinson’s disease, persistent nausea, post-traumatic stress disorder, chronic or intractable pain, among...… Continue Reading
May 25, 2021

Loss Of Congressional District Dooms Mississippi’s Medical Marijuana Initiative

The Mississippi Supreme Court held on May 14, 2021 that a citizen initiative to legalize medical marijuana violated the Mississippi Constitution.  The decision turned on the loss of a congressional district due to the 2000 Census.  Butler v. Watson, Case No. 2020-IA-01199-SCT (May 14, 2021). Background The Mississippi Constitution allows amendments in two different ways:...… Continue Reading
May 21, 2021

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