Connecticut Employment Law Blog

Insight on Labor & Employment Developments for Connecticut Businesses

Can You Still Have Dress Codes After Abercrombie Decision?

Posted in CHRO & EEOC, Discrimination & Harassment, Highlight, Human Resources (HR) Compliance, Litigation
dress1

Probably not appropriate in workplace

I’m not a fan of click-bait, so if you clicked the headline just to know whether your company can still have a dress code policy after the Supreme Court’s decision in EEOC v. Abercrombie & Fitch, the answer is “yes”.

But there’s an important caveat and for that, you’ll need to read on.

The Court’s decision has caused a bit of a ruckus with some commentators portending massive changes to discrimination law. As I said last week, I just don’t see that.

The evidence in the case, according to the lower court’s decision, was that the supervisor had believed that the job applicant was “Muslim” and “figured that was the religious reason why she wore her head scarf.”

Moreover, despite being scored highly in her job interview, the area manager said that the job applicant “should not be hired because she wore a headscarf—a clothing item that was inconsistent with the [company’s] Look Policy.”

In other words, there was more than ample evidence that the applicant’s religious practices played a factor in the Company’s decision not to hire her.

How could a company get tripped up by its own dress code or “look” policy? Well, for one, the policy did not explicitly state that its policy could be tweaked in some instances to accommodate religious practices.  Even the company has now dropped that policy.

All is not lost though for the rest of us. Dress codes are still acceptable.  But companies should not treat them as hardened laws, never to be broken.

One simple fix is to add a clause regarding reasonable accommodations such as this:

Employees who believe a reasonable accommodation to this policy should be granted based on religion, disability or other grounds protected by applicable law should feel free to discuss the matter with their supervisor. Reasonable accommodation will be granted unless it would cause an undue hardship on the employer or other business circumstances warrant.

Obviously, each policy should be tailored to your business and to your state, so — as with your employee handbook — you should have this language reviewed by your employment law counsel.

Now, whether dress codes are a good thing? That’s an entirely separate question for another day…..

 

MOVE Act Introduced; Non-Compete Agreements Would Be Limited, if Passed

Posted in Highlight, Legislative Developments

senate2003While I normally make my year-end reflections at, well, year end, I can’t help but take this moment to see the big picture: We’re hearing an awful lot about restrictive covenants.

These covenants — often in the shape of non-compete clauses or non-solicitation (of employees or customers) clauses — have become popular because companies are looking to protect their financial interests.

Connecticut — despite its reputation for being anti-business — still has relatively strong protections for employers who want to use these clauses for their employee.

But these clauses are coming under attack more and more as their use becomes more widespread.

Jay Wolman, on The Legal Satyricon, noted that non-disparagement clauses in separation agreements may be one area where courts are reluctant to enforce. As a result, employers may want to use severability clauses to have the agreements upheld even if one provision is overbroad:

These clauses are very common, but likely are not long for this world.  In the interim, employer counsel may want to rethink the standard severability clause.  Although employers are certainly keen on obtaining as much a release as possible, it may be time to reconsider whether the agreement should survive if the former employee can simply ignore these clauses.

The ABA Journal of Labor & Employment Law also recently published an article on “Developing Trends in Non-Compete Agreements and Other Restrictive Covenants.” As the authors note, courts still tend to enforce the covenant “if it protects a legitimate business interest, the employee received consideration for the covenant, it is narrowly tailored, and the time and territorial limitations are no greater than necessary to protect the employer’s business interests.”

Despite this, the authors are quick to highlight the fact that each state interprets such things differently.

The New York Times even last year noted the trend of employers using these clauses more.  And not in a good way.

With this publicity in mind, Connecticut is again taking the lead — at least from a federal perspective.

Slate reported last week that Senator Chris Murphy introduced legislation that would ban non-compete agreements altogether for workers who make less than $15 per hour.

It would also require companies to let potential hires know ahead of time that they will be required to sign a non-compete agreement.

The bill, called the Mobility and Opportunity for Vulnerable Employees Act (MOVE) is also co-sponsored by Connecticut’s other senator, Richard Blumenthal.

At a press conference, Senator Murphy said that the bill was necessary in a free labor market.  “If workers can’t go to a competitor for a promised higher wage, then the market fluidity — the labor fluidity that creates upward pressure on wages — disappears,” Murphy said. “If workers are locked into jobs because of non-compete clauses, then there is no reason for companies to raise their wages.”

Without bi-partisan support, the odds of this bill passing are somewhere between never and no.  But don’t be surprised if we see this pop up again at a state level in the next legislative session.

Back from the Dead: Procedural Changes Coming to CHRO and New Protections for Domestic Workers

Posted in CHRO & EEOC, Discrimination & Harassment, Featured, Highlight, Human Resources (HR) Compliance, Laws and Regulations, Legislative Developments, Manager & HR Pro’s Resource Center

maxSo in a post earlier on Friday, I recapped most of the employment law legislation that passed — except one. That bill, Senate Bill 446, was titled “AN ACT CONCERNING THE DEFINITION OF THE TERM “DOMESTIC WORKER”.  

Innocuous enough, right?

But as it turns out, that bill was used as a cover to pass through significant changes to the CHRO process.

You will see that many of the changes are ones that I had tipped you all on earlier this year. Then back in April, we were told that the bill was “mostly dead”.

But like the Princess Bride, “Miracle Max” worked some magic and the bill came back from the dead during the session’s last week.

And there are so many changes that a separate blog post seemed like the best way to get through it all.

So let’s get to it, shall we?

Overall, the OLR summary of the bill recaps four main areas of change to the CHRO. It:

  1. shortens certain time frames for CHRO’s processing of complaints;
  2. allows the respondent (i.e., the alleged wrongdoer) to elect to participate in pre-answer conciliation;
  3. prohibits the same person from being assigned to conduct the mandatory mediation conference and investigate the complaint;
  4. transfers certain responsibilities from the CHRO executive director to the CHRO legal counsel.

But it also makes a significant change to the definition of who is an employee:

The bill also brings domestic workers who work for employers with at least three employees under the employment-related anti-discrimination laws administered by CHRO. Among other things, this provides them with (1) protections against employment-related discrimination based on their race, color, religion, age, sex, gender identity, marital status, national origin, ancestry, and mental or physical disability; (2) a right to a reasonable leave of absence for a disability resulting from a pregnancy and other pregnancy-related protections; and (3) protections against sexual harassment. By law, employees covered under the CHRO statutes can enforce their rights by filing a complaint with the commission.

If signed by the governor, the CHRO provisions will go into effect October 1, 2015, while the provisions on domestic workers will become effective January 1, 2016.

In more detail, the bill makes several changes to the CHRO process.

Responding to the Complaint Continue Reading

Legislative Recap: Bills Relating to Pay Secrecy and Unemployment Pass in Final Days

Posted in Human Resources (HR) Compliance, Legislative Developments, Manager & HR Pro’s Resource Center, Wage & Hour

generalassemblyThe dust has finally settled from the close of the Connecticut General Assembly on Wednesday.  And it’s time to take a look at the last few days to see what employment law bills passed.

(I’ll tackle the changes that have been made to the CHRO in a post later today.)

As I’ve noted in prior posts (here, here and here), several employment law-related bills had already passed including: a bill regarding online privacy rights of employees (signed by Governor); a bill allowing double damages in wage/hour cases awaiting Governor’s signature); a bill protecting interns from discrimination and harassment (same); and a bill introducing labor history into school curriculum (same).

In the last days, however, a closely-watched bill that prohibits employers from enacting rules that prevent employees from sharing information about their wages, passed. It also awaits the Governor’s signature.

The bill has been amended since it was first introduced but still places additional restrictions on employers. As a result, employers should consider updating their policies and revisiting their approach to salary discussions.

As recapped by the General Assembly, the bill accomplishes the following:

This bill prohibits employers, including the state and municipalities, from taking certain steps to limit their employees’ ability to share information about their wages. Under the bill, such sharing consists of employees under the same employer (1) disclosing or discussing the amount of their own wages or other employees’ voluntarily disclosed wages or (2) asking about other employees’ wages. Specifically, the bill bans employers from (1) prohibiting their employees from such sharing; (2) requiring employees to sign a waiver or document that denies their right to such sharing; and (3) discharging, disciplining, discriminating or retaliating against, or otherwise penalizing employees for such sharing.

The bill allows employees to bring a lawsuit to redress a violation of its provisions in any court of competent jurisdiction. The suit must be brought within two years after an alleged violation. Employers can be found liable for compensatory damages, attorney’s fees and costs, punitive damages, and any legal and equitable relief the court deems just and proper.

The amendment to the bill that was passed limits an employee’s sharing of another employee’s wage information to information that (1) is about another of the employer’s employees and (2) was voluntarily disclosed by the other employee.

I’ve noted before that I think many of the provisions are duplicative of federal law and a concern that there isn’t a big public policy need to create a new cause of action here.

But it’s a bit too late for that. The Governor proposed this bill so he is very likely to sign it.  The provisions go into effect on July 1, 2015.  (Contrast that with other bills that go into effect on October 1, 2015.)

Another bill that passed in the closing days was House Bill 6707 which allows employers to fire employees for failing some off-duty drug tests without impacting their unemployment rating.  It awaits the Governor’s signature.  As recapped by the General Assembly:

This bill expands the circumstances under which a private-sector employer can discharge or suspend an employee without affecting the employer’s unemployment taxes. It creates a “non-charge” against an employer’s experience rate for employees discharged or suspended because they failed a drug or alcohol test while off duty and subsequently lost a driver’s license needed to perform the work for which they had been hired. (The law disqualifies a person from operating a commercial motor vehicle for one year if he or she is convicted of driving under the influence (DUI.)) In effect, this allows the discharged or suspended employee to collect unemployment benefits without increasing the employer’s unemployment taxes.

Several other bills failed in the final days including a low wage penalty, paid family & medical leave, a minimum work week for janitors, limits on criminal background checks and on credit reports,

Overall, it was a busy year for the legislature. For employers, the next few months should keep you busy with a review of your existing policies and procedures to ensure compliance with these new laws.

BREAKING – U.S. Supreme Court Holds That Motive, Not Knowledge, Is Critical in Disparate Treatment Cases

Posted in CHRO & EEOC, Discrimination & Harassment, Highlight, Litigation

The long-awaited EEOC v. Abercrombie & Fitch case was released by the U.S. Supreme Court this morning, reversing the Tenth Circuit’s decision. You can download it here.

For anyone following the case, the decision shouldn’t come as a big surprise.  I’ve talked about the case before here and here.

The main holding of the case is this:

To prevail in a disparate-treatment claim, an applicant need show only that his need for an accommodation was a motivating factor in the employer’s decision, not that the employer had knowledge of his need.
The court is quick to note that some anti-discrimination statutes DO require knowledge, such as the ADA.  But Title VII does not. And in that silence, the court said that it could not interpret the statute to include one.
The opinion, written by Scalia, explains the difference between knowledge and motive:
Instead, the intentional discrimination provision prohibits certain motives, regardless of the state of the actor’s knowledge. Motive and knowledge are separate concepts. An employer who has actual knowledge of the need for an accommodation does not violate Title VII by refusing to hire an applicant if avoiding that accommodation is not his motive. Conversely, an employer who acts with the motive of avoiding accommodation may violate Title VII even if he has no more than an unsubstantiated suspicion that accommodation would be needed.
Thus, the rule for disparate-treatment claims based on a failure to accommodate a religious practice is straightforward: An employer may not make an applicant’s religious practice, confirmed or otherwise, a factor in employment decisions. For example, suppose that an employer thinks (though he does not know for certain) that a job applicant may be an orthodox Jew who will observe the Sabbath, and thus be unable to work on Saturdays. If the applicant actually requires an accommodation of that religious practice, and the employer’s desire to avoid the prospective accommodation is a motivating factor in his decision, the employer violates Title VII.
The decision is unusually brief — just seven pages, perhaps reflecting the clear-cut nature of the case.
Take note of footnote three too. The case is decided on narrower grounds than is typically laid out in the press:
While a knowledge requirement cannot be added to the motive requirement, it is arguable that the motive requirement itself is not met unless the employer at least suspects that the practice in question is a religious practice—i.e., that he cannot discriminate “because of” a “religious practice” unless he knows or suspects it to be a religious practice. That issue is not presented in this case, since Abercrombie knew—or at least suspected—that the scarf was worn for religious reasons. The question has therefore not been discussed by either side, in brief or oral argument . It seems to us inappropriate to resolve this unargued point by way of dictum, as the concurrence would do.
For employers, this decision should not come as much of a surprise.  And for employers, it means remaining aware that accommodating a person’s religious belief doesn’t necessarily require your actual knowledge.  Be understanding in your approach to these issues.
The EEOC’s statement earlier this year on accommodating religious beliefs still holds some sway too.
Some will argue (as they already have this morning) that the decision puts employers in a no-win situation.  I think that overstates it.  Employers should use common sense and discuss the topic if there appears to be an issue with an employer’s existing policy.

Legislative Update: Mandatory Double Damages for OT Violations Bill Passes; Other Bills Await Votes

Posted in Highlight, Human Resources (HR) Compliance, Legislative Developments, Wage & Hour

capitolWe’re nearly at the end of the legislative session and the bills are coming fast and furious.

Late Friday, the General Assembly passed a bill (Senate Bill 914) that mandates (rather than allows) double damages to be granted in instances where an employer failed to pay an employee the proper minimum wage or overtime pay.

Courts will still have discretion to determine what may be “allowed” for costs and “reasonable attorney’s fees.”

The bill creates one exception: Under the bill, the double-damage requirement does not apply to employers who establish a good-faith belief that their underpayments were legal. Such employers must, however, pay full damages, plus court costs and attorney’s fees, as those fees are determined by the court.

The bill, if signed by the governor (which is expected), will go into effect October 1, 2015.

I previously discussed this bill back in March here.

As to what else is out there (as of late Sunday evening):

General Assembly Passes Bill Protecting Interns from Discrimination and Harassment

Posted in CHRO & EEOC, Discrimination & Harassment, Highlight, Human Resources (HR) Compliance, Legislative Developments, Manager & HR Pro’s Resource Center
These are not the interns you are seeking

These are not the interns you are seeking

Believe it or not, harassment against summer interns isn’t directly prohibited under Connecticut law.  (But treating them like employees without paying them is against the law.)

This is not, however, a column about the best ways to harass your interns.  Indeed, regardless of the law, it’s bad in so many ways.  (And the CHRO has taken the position — yet to be tested in courts — that interns are already covered.)

But all that is about to change. Earlier this week, the Connecticut General Assembly passed legislation (Senate Bill 428) that would make it illegal to do so and allow those interns to file claims not only with the Connecticut Commission on Human Rights & Opportunities but ultimately in Superior Court too.

The bill, which awaits the Governor’s signature, would go into effect October 1, 2015 and has several important aspects that employers should be aware of now.  The bill follows a trend in California, New York, and other states to protect interns more explicitly under the law.

So, who IS an intern?

An intern is defined as someone who performs work for an employer for the purpose of training, provided:

  1. the employer is not committed to hire the person performing the work at the conclusion of the training period;
  2. the employer and the person performing the work agree that the person performing the work is not entitled to wages for the work performed; and
  3. the work performed meets five conditions.

Those five conditions are that the work:

  • supplements training given in an educational environment that may enhance the employability of the person;
  • provides experience for the benefit of the person;
  • does not displace any employee of the employer;
  • is performed under the supervision of the employer or an employee of the employer; and
  • provides no immediate advantage to the employer providing the training and may occasionally impede the operations of the employer; and

If you’ve seen some or most of these factors before, that’s because the U.S. Department of Labor has outlined something similar in its definition of interns.

And what exactly is prohibited?

Well, for most part, the things that are prohibited against employees are prohibited against interns.

For example, the bill prohibits discrimination based on an intern’s race, color, religious creed, age, sex, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, marital status, national origin, ancestry, present or past history of mental disability, intellectual disability, learning disability or physical disability, including, but not limited to, blindness. The bill’s prohibition covers hiring, firing, and advertising internships.

It also prohibits sexual harassment against interns.

The bill also bans an employer from retaliating against an intern for filing a complaint or testifying in a proceeding about a discrimination complaint.

For employers, this new law (when signed by the governor) should lead to a few steps being taken:

1) Amend your policies and procedures to cover interns. That includes your anti-harassment policies.

2) Educate your managers and your interns on what is appropriate in the workplace.  It is particularly important for the interns who may have had little workplace experiences before this.

3) If you have insurance, ask your insurer whether it will cover claims made by interns (who are not, by the way, defined as employees).

4) Consider the risk factors of continuing an internship program.  If these interns can now bring suit against your company, I have no doubt that some companies may say that the risk is too high.

There are still unanswered questions about this. If an unpaid intern gets “fired”, what are his or her damages? There is no back pay so then what? Reinstatement? And if the employer has the right not to hire the person after the training period, then what?

Fortunately, this bill seems to be in search of a problem that doesn’t seem particularly rampant.  In the testimony in support of the bill, not a single example of intern discrimination or harassment was identified, even by the Connecticut Commission on Human Rights & Opportunities.

That said, stay tuned for more as the particulars of this bill get incorporated into everyday practice.

 

No Specific Statute Cited in a Pleading? No Problem, Says the Court

Posted in Discrimination & Harassment, Litigation

It is commonly understood that Connecticut is mainly a “fact-pleading” state when it comes to the court system.

What does that mean? Well, Norm Pattis, in a 2013 Law Tribune column, described the significance in calling for the state to change the way plaintiffs file their lawsuits.

You recall the distinction, don’t you, between notice pleading and fact pleading? We notice plead in the federal courts. All that is required is a short and plain statement of the plaintiff’s legal theory and such facts as are sufficient to put the defendant on notice of the claim for relief and its basis.

Not so in state court. In state court, we require fact pleading. This invites the sort of gamesmanship among litigators that yields nothing but delay. …

Plead too many facts? Endure the request to revise for pleading repetitive, scandalous and irrelevant facts. Plead lean? Well, of course, a motion to strike, not enough facts to make a claim. Famed litigator Gerry Spence was once sanctioned outing such tactics with frank speech: Let’s just say he accused a lawyer of finger-fornicating a file. Get the point?

But after a recent Connecticut Supreme Court case,  employers (who, after all, defend against claims under this standard) should start to wonder whether this standard is going to be upheld much going forward.
In the section of the case I’ll talk about today, the employer argued that the plaintiff/employee didn’t put it on notice of the statutory basis for a potential sexual harassment claim. Why? Because the complaint didn’t cite the specific statute.
The problem with that theory was that the plaintiff had a section of the complaint entitled “CONNECTICUT FAIR EMPLOYMENT PRACTICES ACT (SEXUAL HARASSMENT).” And in that section, there were allegations that another employee rubbed his body against the plaintiff’s among other claims.
The court said that the mention in the complaint as well as what was discussed in discovery was enough even though the complaint did not specifically allege the specific statutory cite: Conn. Gen. Stat. Sec. 46a-60(a)(8)(c).
Although the plaintiff’s complaint was certainly not a model of clarity, it is clear that the defendant understood that the plaintiff’s allegations regarding [the co-worker]’s conduct were intended to raise a hostile work environment claim pursuant to § 46a-60 (a) (8) (C), because that is the theory that the defendant attempted to discredit on the merits in its motion for summary judgment. The plaintiff confirmed the defendant’s understanding when she contended in her opposition to the defendant’s motion for summary judgment that she had established a genuine issue of material fact as to whether [the co-worker]’s conduct had worsened her “working environment. . . .” Thus, contrary to the Appellate Court’s conclusion that the trial court simply assumed without any basis that the plaintiff had intended to bring a hostile work environment claim, the trial court was merely addressing the issue as it had been framed by the parties. “[A]lthough a plaintiff should plead a statute [on which the plaintiff intends to rely] in a complaint . . . failing to do so will not necessarily bar recovery as long as the [defendant is] sufficiently apprised of the applicable statute during the course of the proceedings.” …  Because the defendant understood the nature of the plaintiff’s sexual harassment claim, we conclude that the Appellate Court improperly upheld the ruling of the trial court on the alternative ground that the plaintiff had not expressly pleaded § 46a-60 (a) (8) (C).”
The Supreme Court’s logic here presents the classic “damned if you do, damned if you don’t” conundrum.  Had the employer not moved for summary judgment on that ground, it would have been precluded from making the argument in the future but having raised the argument, the court says, in essence “See? You understood it after all — why else are you making the argument?”
In any event, the case raises suggests that even poorly drafted complaints are going to get a favorable look by the courts — fact-pleading requirements notwithstanding.  For employers, it means thinking about your strategy for a defense early on and consider whether a “request to revise” is going to be a helpful procedural maneuver at the start of a case.

“I Don’t Want to Be Alone Anymore” – Refusing to Meet with Female Subordinates One-on-One

Posted in CHRO & EEOC, Discrimination & Harassment, Highlight, Human Resources (HR) Compliance, Legislative Developments

congresswhouseI confess that when I first heard the story last week that some Capitol Hill lawmakers were refusing to meet alone with female subordinates, I didn’t pay much attention to it.   Lawmakers just being lawmakers.

(I was also reminded of the old Billy Joel song, I Don’t Want to Be Alone Anymore, but I digress….)

Over the weekend, I was listening to Slate’s Political Gabfest podcast (which I highly recommend) which talked about the story more in detail.

And the more I heard, the more I wondered whether any private employers adopted this practice.

For companies, though, this type of practice is just trouble waiting to happen.

First the backstory. During a recent survey, female staffers reported on sexist behavior at Congress.  Some inadvertent.  But some of it was not.  According to the Washington Post story on it:

The worst transgression, which multiple women reported (and National Journal’s interviews with male colleagues confirmed), was a more deliberate inequity: In some offices, only male staffers can spend time one on one with their (male) bosses.

“There was an office rule that I couldn’t be alone with the congressman,” one anonymous staffer reported.

Another: “I was not allowed to staff my boss at certain events without another male staffer present — because I was a woman.”

And another: “My former boss never took a closed-door meeting with me in the span of working for him, off and on, over a 12-year stretch. Even when I was in a position of senior leadership.”

One woman said she was told she could no longer join her GOP congressman boss at events because the chief of staff decided her presence in so many photos was “not appropriate.” In another case, a similar call was made at the behest of the wife of an unnamed Southern Republican, because the Mrs. thought such interactions looked “unseemly.”

Now, this isn’t the first time I’ve heard of such an isolation rule. In schools, for example, teachers are often taught not to be alone with students.  And in sex harassment prevention training course, we sometimes talk about how it’s not a good idea for co-workers at a conference to meet up in one’s hotel room or to force employees to share a hotel room to “cut costs”.

But obviously, this Capitol Hill story goes much further.  And as the Slate Political Gabfest folks correctly note, it may very well be unlawful discrimination — at least as applied to the private workplace.

As one employment law attorney noted in a story for the National Journal:

[The attorney] worries that limitations on what female staffers could do in a congressional office compared to male staffers would hinder hiring decisions. And even for women who do get hired, the lack of one-on-one time could prevent them from moving up within their offices. “You’re not being perceived as a professional,” [she] said.

“So much happens in creating trustful relationships and if you can’t develop a trustful relationship where you’re having some one-on-one time, as the men apparently are getting—I can see many reasons why this is a terrible idea, terrible in the sense of discriminatory,” [the attorney] added, calling the practice “clearly unlawful.”

In short, such a practice is just a bad idea.  If a supervisor is worried about perceptions, he or she has a few choices.  Among them: 1) Refuse to meet with ANY subordinate alone, thereby treating everyone the same; or 2) Meet with subordinates of both genders alone and just avoid any appearance of impropriety.

And a supervisor can do common sense things too — like avoid meeting a subordinate in a hotel room during an off-site conference to avoid the appearance that anything other than work behavior is expected.

But let’s call treating employees differently because of their gender for what it is: Discrimination.

Quick Update on Connecticut Legislative Proposals

Posted in Legislative Developments, Wage & Hour

generalassemblyThe Connecticut General Assembly is winding down in the next eight days, but not before some very significant legislation gets a thumbs up or down.

As discussed before, the legislature has already passed a bill expanding an employee’s online privacy interests.  That bill was signed by the governor on May 19th.  It goes into effect October 1st.

Also passed was Senate Bill 963, which adds labor history to the topics that schools are encouraged to teach.  The bill still awaits the governor’s signature.

So, what’s still alive?

  • Senate Bill 1044, which will impose a tax on certain employers who fail to pay their employees $15 per hour.  (See also House Bill 6791, which also tax certain employers in other circumstances for the same failure to pay workers $15/hour.)
  • Senate Bill 428, which would create protections for interns to be free of harassment.
  • Senate Bill 914, which would create mandatory double damages penalties for employers in wage/hour cases.
  • House Bill 6789, which would both limit and broaden the circumstances under which an employer can require an employee or job applicant to consent to a credit report request.  It has already passed the House.
  • House Bill 6850, which would afford employees more opportunities to discuss their wages, beyond what is already contemplated by federal law.

There are others too but these seem to be the most high-profile ones at the moment.

Stay tuned!