On August 3, 2020, the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York upended several employer-friendly limitations in the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) regulations implementing the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA). Specifically, the court struck down the DOL’s regulations regarding: (1) the requirement that employers actually have work available for employees in order to be eligible for leave; (2) the broad definition of “health care provider” under the final rule;…
On July 7, 2020, the Government of Alberta proposed important changes for workplaces through Bill 32, the Restoring Balance in Alberta’s Workplaces Act, 2020 (Bill 32). The stated purpose of Bill 32 is to increase investment in Alberta’s workforce and to reduce the administrative burden for employers. On July 29, 2020, Bill 32 received Royal Assent. Bill 32 will result in amendments to Alberta’s Labour Relations Code and Employment Standards Code. These changes continue to…
Legislative Relief Package Stalls. The Buzz recently predicted that negotiations over a fourth COVID-19 legislative relief package would be like an immovable object facing an unstoppable force. Unfortunately, it appears that this prediction is coming true, as our elected officials in Washington, D.C. don’t appear to be any closer to a deal than they were several months ago. As a result, President Donald Trump announced that he is preparing executive orders concerning a payroll…
On August 4, 2020, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a communication plan titled “COVID-19 Communication Plan for Select Non-healthcare Critical Infrastructure Employers.” The purpose of the plan is to outline actions certain critical infrastructure employers may consider to disseminate COVID-19 messages with employees more effectively. The plan suggests key messages employers may consider to inform employees and provides prepared CDC communication materials in multiple languages for use in…
Since March 2020, St. Louis County Executive Dr. Sam Page, and the county’s acting director of the Department of Public Health (DPH), Dr. Emily Doucette, have issued more than 20 orders and “safe operating guidelines” regarding COVID-19. On July 29, 2020, with an effective date of July 31, 2020, the DPH issued its third amended public health order setting forth its current “Business and Individual Guidelines for Social Distancing and Re-Opening.” In some respects, this…
As part of Mexico’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the federal government of Mexico has established a biweekly traffic-light monitoring system with four criteria that Mexico’s states must meet before proceeding to the next phase of the country’s reopening plan. Below is a map for the period of August 3, 2020, through August 16, 2020, indicating the COVID-19 risk level in each of Mexico’s 32 states. In addition, we have provided a chart listing the…
In March 2020, everyone thought we just need to occupy our children at home for a few weeks, maybe through spring break, and we would be fine. Then it was “just make it to summer.” Now summer is winding down and many kids are not going back to school full-time (at least not in person) any time soon. This creates tremendous challenges for families as well as employers. Employer Obligations Under the FFCRA While many…
On July 30, 2020, Wisconsin joined 31 other states—including Alabama, California, and Pennsylvania—with a statewide face covering order. Governor Tony Evers issued Emergency Order #1, requiring all individuals in Wisconsin over the age of five and medically able to do so to don cloth face coverings (not including face shields or mesh coverings) any time they are “indoors or in an enclosed space, other than a private residence,” and in the…
On July 22, 2020, Health Officer Tomás J. Aragón of the City and County of San Francisco issued Public Health Emergency Order No. C19-12c, entitled, “Order of the Health Officer of the City and County of San Francisco Generally Requiring Members of the Public and Workers to Wear Face Coverings.” This order replaces San Francisco’s previous face covering order, issued on May 28, 2020, and became effective at 11:59 p.m. on July 23, 2020.…
Conducting business in the U.S. Virgin Islands poses unique challenges not often encountered in the states, but also unique opportunities. This 20-part series offers tips for doing business in the U.S. Virgin Islands, covering a broad array of topics affecting employers. Part nine of this series addresses the laws relevant to accommodating disabled or high-risk employees in the workplace. Tip 9: Accommodating Disabled or High-Risk Employees During the COVID-19 Pandemic                                                               In response to the COVID-19…