Labor & Employment

COVID-à manger: COVID-19 Takes a Bite out of French Lunch Traditions

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed dining habits across the world, as governments have shut down and restricted indoor and outdoor dining.  Even where restrictions have eased, many avoid sit-down dining out of concern for COVID-19 exposure and rely on take-away for their restaurant meals.  Clearly, the COVID-19 pandemic has limited dining options.

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Video: EEOC’s Proposed Wellness Regulations and Incentivizing Vaccines – Employment Law This Week

As featured in #WorkforceWednesday:  In early January, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) issued proposed rules on using incentives to encourage employee participation in wellness programs. While we don’t know exactly how President Biden’s EEOC will adjust the proposed rules, attorney Frank Morris explains why employers should keep the rules in mind when offering incentives to employees for COVID-19 vaccination. Read more.

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The 2021 Consolidated Appropriations Act Extends Pandemic Unemployment Benefits

On December 21, 2020, Congress passed the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 (CAA) which modifies or extends to March 14, 2021 many of the relief programs first created in March 2020 by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES Act), including three expanded unemployment insurance benefits programs (which we previously blogged about here) and a new benefit program for “mixed earners”.  We provide here a summary of the updates to those programs.

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President Biden Issues Executive Order on Workplace Safety During the COVID-19 Pandemic

On January 21, 2021, in an effort to provide enforcement of more stringent worker safety standards, President Biden issued an Executive Order (‘EO”) on Protecting Worker Health and Safety. The EO specifically orders the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (“OSHA”) of the Department of Labor to:

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On January 12, 2021, the Ontario government declared a second provincial emergency under section 7.0.1 (1) of the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act, in response to the drastic rise in the number of COVID-19 cases in the province.

Stay-At-Home Order

As part of the provincial emergency, Ontario has issued a stay-at-home order that will come into effect at 12:01 a.m. on Thursday, January 14, 2021, and will last for at least 28 days. This stay-at-home order requires that Ontarians remain at home except for certain permitted purposes, including going to the grocery store or pharmacy, accessing health care services, exercising, or working, where permitted. The province has mandated that “all businesses must ensure that any employee who can work from home, does work from home” (emphasis added).

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On January 4, 2021, Dr. Eileen de Villa, Medical Officer of Health, announced new measures for all employers and persons responsible for a business or organization in the City of Toronto (“Toronto“) permitted to be open under the Reopening Ontario Act. All persons responsible for a business or organization in Toronto are instructed to follow the public health measures outlined below:

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The FFCRA: It’s goodbye for now, but maybe not forever

With 2020 coming to an end, speculation swirled among employers about whether the Families First Coronavirus Response Act’s December 31 expiration date would be extended. Well, employers have their answer in the stimulus bill signed by President Trump on December 27. It’s goodbye for now to the FFCRA, but it may not be goodbye forever. Read more…

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How employers should handle vaccination issues in relation to COVID-19 vaccination

Mandatory vaccination policies are typically legal, but in many cases implementing such policies may prove challenging. In a recent Gallup Poll, only 58% of those in the U.S. said they would willingly be vaccinated. That potentially leaves a significant percent of individuals unvaccinated creating a dilemma for employers about whether to mandate vaccines for employees. Read more…

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FAQ: EEOC Issues Guidance for Employers Regarding COVID-19 Vaccinations

On December 16, 2020, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) issued guidance regarding COVID-19 vaccinations in the workplace and how they may implicate the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and other federal laws. In short, the ADA and related federal laws generally do not prohibit employers from requiring vaccines for their employees so long as the employer provides reasonable accommodations for disabilities and sincerely held religious beliefs. However, other laws may prohibit terminating the employment of an employee who refuses to get vaccinated.

Davis & Gilbert Labor & Employment attorneys Gregg Brochin and Sabrina Worthy summarize key questions and answers from the new EEOC guidance regarding COVID-19 vaccinations in the workplace. If you have additional questions, please contact any of the authors or the D&G attorney with whom you have regular contact. Read more…

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Video: COVID-19 Vaccine Challenges in the Workplace – Employment Law This Week

As featured in #WorkforceWednesday: Employers considering mandatory COVID-19 vaccination programs need to address challenges. For example, how will your company handle reasonable accommodations or the potential risk of liability for health problems caused by employer-mandated vaccines? Read more.

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