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Legislature Takes a Recess—Human Resources CANNOT

California’s Legislature will soon be taking a recess. There have been several votes on employment bills and many have cleared to go on for further vote.

Some of the bills are:

● Prohibit employers from inquiring about salary history during the hiring process (AB 168);
● Require larger employers to collect and publish information concerning gender pay differences for exempt employees (AB 1209);
● Preclude employers from inquiring about criminal convictions until after a conditional offer of employment and impose new limitations upon and disclosure requirements for considering criminal convictions (AB 1008);
● Require employers with more than 20 employees to provide up to 12 workweeks of parental leave (SB 63);
● Prohibit employers from responding to federal immigration agency requests or assisting with “immigration worksite enforcement actions” unless certain conditions are met (AB 450); and
● Expand the Labor Commissioner’s powers when investigating retaliation complaints, including allowing pre-determination injunctive relief (i.e., TRO’s) (SB 306).

As mentioned in previous publications there is no rest for Human Resources when it comes to complying with all of the municipal employment laws. For employers, that have offices throughout the state this can be a complicated endeavor. For instance, San Francisco increased its minimum wage (to $14 an hour), expanded its Parental Leave Ordinance, and enacting its own workplace lactation rules. The City of Emeryville’s Fair Workweek Ordinance also took effect on July 1, even though it is still considering regulations regarding this new law. Los Angeles’ minimum wage increased to $12.00 per hour for employers with 26 or more employees and to $10.50 for employers with 25 or fewer employees.

For organizations that operate throughout the State of California, for continuity within an organization, it may be beneficial to take the strictest regulations and encompass them throughout the organization (contact your organization’s labor attorney to get legal advice before implementing new policies).

Safety and Wellness Regulations Heat is Upon Us

The Southern California weather has experienced some record-breaking heat and there does not appear to be a break in the heat wave in the near future. For this reason, now is the time to conduct Heat Illness Prevention training and ensure you are supplying water, rest, and shade.

Under OSHA law, employers are responsible for providing workplaces free of known safety hazards. This includes protecting workers from extreme heat. Provide workers with water, rest and shade.

  • Allow new or returning workers to gradually increase workloads and take breaks that are more frequent as they acclimatize, or build a tolerance for working in the heat.
  • Plan for emergencies and train workers on prevention.
  • Monitor workers for signs of illness.