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Alphabet Soup of HR Compliance

The panel presentations for the capstone projects were all phenomenal presentations. I chose to review Harassment and Discrimination presented by Kori, Kathy, Angela, and Amanda. I chose this presentation because we can always learn something new in this area of HR and that, I did!

This panel presentation was a culmination of; PDA (Pregnancy Discrimination Act); FMLA (Family Medical Leave Act); ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act); PWFA (Pregnant Workers Fairness Act); and state-specific laws governed by Texas, California, and Missouri. I found the breakdown of the specific state laws fascinating. As HR Practitioners, we have to focus (basically) all of our time on mastering our state’s laws it is difficult to find time to learn about the nuances of other state laws.

Each panelist reviewed what they learned when doing their research for their paper. They spoke of barriers, statics, and the fact that harassment is “alive and well” in the US in the present day. A fascinating fact that I learned in this segment was that there are twenty (20) laws protecting employees’ attendance in California. I can’t imagine navigating that attendance minefield. At my Company, in 2022 over 50% of our disciplinary actions were for attendance. So, with having virtually no control over attendance, how do you manage the day-to-day operations in California?

In the next segment of the presentation, the panelist shared what they found “Interesting and Surprising.” The most interesting thing that I learned was about the PWFA. The PWFA had bipartisan support and still took ten years to pass into law. Through the years it would gain support but eventually, lose momentum. It wasn’t until December of 2022, that it was passed and goes into effect June 2027, 2023.

The third segment of the presentation was based on an important piece of their paper that they “Wanted others to know.” What I did not know, is the level of scrutiny the SB45 brings for sexual harassment claims under Texas law. This new law expands the definition of employer, creates a higher standard for employers personally, and creates a new statute of limitations. this law will really make employers take sexual harassment seriously in Texas, more states should act in the interest of their employees in this way.

In the last segment, each panelist provided a prediction of the future in terms of employment as it relates to their capstone project. I think each was interesting and possible, and worth the view (of the presentation). It would be interesting to return to this presentation in a few years to see if the predictions came true.

Review of ABCs of HR © 2023 by Tara Petroski is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 4.0

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