By Robin Shea on Posted in Immigration,Politics,PregnancyPresident Trump endorses the RAISE Act, which would clamp down on legal immigration. The RAISE Act legislation, among other things, would give immigration priority according to a skills-based “points” system and to individuals who speak English. If enacted in its current form, it would be expected to reduce legal immigration to the United States by about 50 percent.… Continue Reading
By Robin Shea on Posted in Drug Testing(When I think out loud, beware.) Ellen Kearns’ discussion of last week’s decision in Barbuto v. Advantage Sales and Marketing, in which the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court ruled that employers may have to accommodate employees who use medical marijuana, got me thinking about whether we need to revisit some of our assumptions about marijuana in the… Continue Reading
By Robin Shea on Posted in Americans with Disabilities Act,DiscriminationTrue or false: A rotator cuff injury is a "disability" within the meaning of the Americans with Disabilities Act. The best answer is “In all likelihood.” A minor tear that can be repaired may not be a disability (it depends), but a severe injury, or one that is inoperable with residual limitations, probably is. True… Continue Reading
By Robin Shea on Posted in Americans with Disabilities ActDear Americans with Disabilities Act, How time flies — you’re already 25 years old! I have seen many lovely tributes to you this week, and a couple of my favorites are here and here. I hope you don’t mind one more from me. When President George H.W. Bush signed you into law in 1990, I had… Continue Reading
By Robin Shea on Posted in Americans with Disabilities ActWhat do you really know about the “interactive process” under the Americans with Disabilities Act? This is one area in which I am always getting questions, and I think it’s the terminology that scares employers. “Interactive process” sounds so intimidating. Instead of “interactive process,” it should be called “sit-down.” When an individual needs a reasonable accommodation,… Continue Reading
By Robin E. Shea on Posted in Americans with Disabilities Act,Discrimination,Family and Medical Leave ActIn a public hearing conducted by the EEOC on leaves of absence and the ADA, an attorney for the agency provided five warnings for employers. This is a smokin' hot subject, particularly in light of the ADA Amendments Act and its regulations, the "new," more activist EEOC under Chair Jacqueline Berrien, and two recent multi-million-dollar settlements in leave-of-absence lawsuits brought by the EEOC against Sears, Roebuck & Co. and Supervalu, Inc. (Jewel-Osco).… Continue Reading
By Robin E. Shea on Posted in DiscriminationThe most important thing to remember about the ADAAA is that, for the most part, all it does is change (albeit drastically) the definition of "disability." The ADAAA does not affect the old ADA's anti-discrimination, reasonable accommodation, confidentiality, or "medical examination" provisions. As a practical matter, what this means is that employers will no longer be able to rely on the defense of "no disability," but if they avoid discrimination and handle reasonable accommodation requests well, they should still be able to avoid liability.
With that "bottom line," here are my best practices for staying out of trouble in light of the ADAAA… Continue Reading