In the June 3, 2020 decision of Kenneh v. Homeward Bound, Inc., the Minnesota Supreme Court declined to abandon the severe or pervasive standard for sexual harassment claims arising under the Minnesota Human Rights Act (“MHRA”). By U.S. Supreme Court caselaw under Title VII, a hostile work environment sexual harassment claim requires a plaintiff
Legal Warning to Employers: Don’t be too Quick to “Friend” Your Employees on Facebook!
In the face of the ever-evolving world of social media, employers face a myriad of challenging issues relating to their employees’ use of their own, personal sites, such as Facebook and blogs. These issues include how to handle employees who post information about the employer, how to deal with employees who use sites to harass…
It’s Party Time!
The time has come for companies to begin planning their 2019 holiday parties. While these events are a great way to show appreciation for employees and build morale, they can present certain risks for employers. Being mindful of the following issues can help employers avoid complaints, or worse, lawsuits, associated with holiday parties.
Can an Employer be Cited by OSHA if an Employee is a Victim of Violence While Working?
Almost 2 million workers in the United States report that they have been victims of violence in their workplace each year. OSHA is focusing on workplace violence and employers need to be aware of their obligations to protect employees from known or foreseeable violent situations in the workplace.
General Duty Clause
OSHA (a division of…
Proving Sexual Harassment May Become Much Easier
The Minnesota legislature has once again taken up proposed legislation that would add language to the Minnesota Human Rights Act (MHRA) eliminating the U.S. Supreme Court’s standard for actionable sexual harassment, which requires it to be “severe or pervasive.” House File No. 10 and its companion Senate File No. 1307 propose adding the following sentence…
Put the phone down!
In helping employers with their written employment policies, we are often asked whether it is necessary to have a policy regarding employees’ use of cell phones for work purposes while driving. The answer, as is often the case, is “it depends.” If your employees drive as part of their job or commonly use their cell phones for work purposes while driving, then your company should address cell phone use while driving in a written policy. A well-written policy can not only reduce the likelihood of accidents caused or contributed to by distracted driving, it can also help reduce your company’s liability in the event of an accident caused or contributed by your company’s employee.
Continue Reading Put the phone down!
What to do with #MeToo (A Primer for Businesses and Business Leaders)
About a year ago, 10 days after the Harvey Weinstein sexual harassment story broke, Alyssa Milano tweeted “– if this has happened to you tweet #MeToo.” In the first 24 hours after that tweet rocked the nation, Facebook had 12 million Facebook posts and a movement was born. The movement is creating new landscapes for…
Can A Man Sexually Harass Another Man?
Don’t assume that men can’t sexually harass other men (or women can’t harass other women), or otherwise discriminate against them in violation of the civil rights laws. In August of this year, the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals issued a decision involving allegations of sexual harassment by a male employee against his male coworkers and…
Romance in the Workplace
The MeToo movement has highlighted the reality that people who work closely together can develop romantic feelings about a co-worker. In many cases, these feelings are not reciprocated, and how the party who desires a sexual or romantic relationship deal with that can create problems.
Surveys have estimated that 20 percent of married partners met…