Genetic Nondiscrimination Law Affects Many Work Practices

Take steps now to avoid running afoul of the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA), which prohibits discrimination in health coverage and employment on the basis of genetic information. Title II addresses discrimination in employment, and prohibits employers from acquiring genetic information about employees, and from using genetic information for hiring, firing or promotion decisions, and for any decisions regarding terms of employment.

Since the term “genetic information” is defined broadly, it’s important that employers understand the many situations in which GINA can apply. Final regulations from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission provide guidance on this.

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Risky Business: Disciplining Employee with Paycheck

Do these two policies look familiar to you? Do they resemble policies you’ve seen in employee handbooks, or which might be in your employee handbook?OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

  • “Terminated employees will not be given their final paycheck until they have completed the exit interview and have returned all property belonging to the employer.”
  • “Payday is every Thursday. However, if you are repeatedly absent on Friday, your paycheck may not be issued until Friday.”

Disciplining employees by attaching strings to their paychecks is a common practice among some employers. After all, what better way to discipline employees than by putting their paychecks at risk? But the actual risk is to the employer. Continue reading

Texas Employers and The New Open Carry Law

There were recently two laws passed in the state of Texas which make it the 45th state in the United States to allow the open carry of firearms.texas-890550_1280.png

House Bill No. 910, which went into effect on January 1, 2016, allows licensed handgun owners to carry a handgun openly (holstered on the belt or shoulder) anywhere that a concealed handgun is permitted.  There are some exceptions including hospitals and nursing homes, sporting events, amusement parks, government buildings, and religious establishments such as churches and synagogues.

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