HR Huddle - May 26, 2022

Overview

Read More

Topics: HR Huddle

HR Huddle - April 28, 2022

Overview

  • The 2022 Annual Vietnam Era Veterans’ Readjustment Assistance Act (VEVRAA) national hiring benchmark was recently updated on the VEVRAA Hiring Benchmark Database.
  • Component 1 EEO-1 reports are due May 17, 2022. The Redstone GCI HR team can support you with preparing and filing your EEO-1 report. Please contact us today if you are in need of assistance.
  • Covered federal contractors must certify their Affirmative Action Plans (AAP) through the OFCCP Contractor Portal by June 30, 2022. Please contact our HR Team if you need assistance with your AAP or the certification process.
  • The Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs issued a new directive (DIR 2022-02) that is intended to promote effective enforcement of the equal employment opportunity laws that the agency enforces.
  • The Department of Homeland Security has announced updates regarding the I-9 form and its verification Beginning May 1, 2022, DHS will no longer allow employers to accept expired List B Documents for form I-9 verification. If an employee presented an expired List B document between May 1, 2020, and April 30, 2022, employers are required to update their I-9 forms by July 31, 2022. DHS has provided a helpful table that explains the updated requirements.
  • The current version of the I-9 form expires on October 1, 2022. DHS plans to “re-vamp” the form with several goals in mind:
    • Compressing Sections 1 and 2 from two pages to one page to reduce paper use.
    • Moving Section 3 to a separate Reverification and Rehire Supplement.
    • Updating the List of Acceptable Documents to include a link to List C documents (on the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services website) issued by DHS.
    • Reducing and simplifying the form's instructions from 15 pages to 7 pages.
    • Removing electronic PDF enhancements to ensure that the form can be completed on all electronic devices. 
  • It is expected that the US Department of Labor (DOL) will publish a proposed overtime rule in the very near future.
  • An Appeals Court recently upheld a COVID-19 Vaccination Directive that requires federal workers to be vaccinated.
  • EEOC leaders recently discussed four areas that they aim to focus on in 2022. These areas include:
    • COVID-19 Mandates
    • Diversity and Tech
    • DEI Demographics Audits
    • Disability Rights
  • The EEOC recently released a technical assistance document regarding Caregiver Discrimination due to the COVID-19 Pandemic.
Read More

Topics: HR Huddle

HR Huddle - March 30, 2022

Overview

  • The 2021 EEO-1 Component 1 data collection is scheduled to open April 12, 2022 with a deadline of May 17, 2022 to file the report.
  • OFCCP’s Affirmative Action Plan Certification period begins March 31 and ends June 30. Covered contractors must certify their AAP in the new Contractor Portal.
  • The U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas ruled on March 14, 2022 that the Biden Administration violated the Administrative Procedure Act when it delayed and then withdrew the Trump era Independent Contractor Rule. Accordingly, the Court ruled that the Contractor Status Rule became effective on its original effective date, March 8, 2021.
  • The Department of Labor announced a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) to update the Davis-Bacon and Related Acts.
  • The US Department of Labor released a field assistance bulletin (FAB) regarding specific examples of what constitutes unlawful retaliation under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), and visa programs.
  • The EEOC has updated its question-and-answer COVID guidance, this time with information about Title VII’s prohibition on religious discrimination in the context of religious accommodations to workplace vaccination requirements. This new guidance helps employers better understand the process of reviewing requests for religious accommodations and when and how to grant them.
  • The Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) released a new directive (DIR 2022-01) regarding pay equity audits.
  • On March 31, 2022, the OFCCP issued Directive 2022-02 in an effort to “promote greater contractor compliance” by “conducting comprehensive compliance evaluations” in a timely manner, promoting contractor’s self-audit of systems, implementing cross-regional approach to multi-establishment reviews and promoting communication with contractors.

Read More

Topics: HR Huddle

HR Huddle - February 28, 2022

Overview

Read More

Topics: HR Huddle

HR Huddle - January 27, 2022

Overview

  • The US Supreme Court blocked the OSHA vaccine and testing mandate for large private employers.
  • The Federal Contractor mandate established by EO 14042 is still subject to a nationwide injunction entered by the United States District Court for the Southern District of Georgia on December 7, 2021. This injunction has been appealed to the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals by the Biden Administration. This injunction ordered the federal government to temporarily stop enforcement of the COVID vaccine mandate for federal contractors.  
  • Effective January 30, 2022, the federal contractor minimum wage will be increased to $15 per hour for covered employees working on covered contracts.
  • Contractors will be able to register for the OFCCP’s new Contractor Portal on February 1, 2022.
  • The 2021 EEO-1 Data Collection period is tentatively set to open on April 12, 2022.
  • Group health plans and insurers must cover or reimburse in full for over-the-counter COVID-19 tests.
Read More

Topics: HR Huddle

HR Huddle - December 20, 2021

Overview

  • The Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) issued an announcement on December 2, 2021 introducing its new contractor portal.  OFCCP describes the portal as a “platform where covered contractors must certify whether they are meeting their requirement to develop and maintain annual AAPs [affirmative action programs].”  Beginning on March 31, 2022, contractors will be able to utilize the certification feature in the portal to certify their AAP compliance and existing contractors “must” certify whether they have developed and maintained an affirmative action program for each of their establishments or functional units by June 30, 2022.
  • EEOC adds new info on when COVID-19 may be a disability: What You Should Know About COVID-19 and the ADA, the Rehabilitation Act, and Other EEO Laws | U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (eeoc.gov).
  • The US DOL Wage and Hour Division has announced a final rule to implement Executive Order 14026 that will increase the federal contractor hourly minimum wage to $15.
  • The Federal Contractor Vaccine Mandate established by EO 14042 is now subject to a nationwide injunction entered by Federal Judge Stan Baker of the United States District Court for the Southern District of Georgia on December 7, 2021. This injunction ordered the federal government to temporarily stop enforcement of the COVID vaccine mandate for federal contractors. Employers may still choose to adopt voluntary vaccine mandates but must be mindful of the states that have adopted laws limiting or banning vaccine mandates.  
  • Due to a stay by the US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, all activities related to the OSHA COVID-19 Vaccination and Testing ETS have been suspended. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit now has jurisdiction over ETS challenges and DOL has filed a motion to lift the stay. Note that the ETS also acts as a proposal for a permanent standard that is subject to the normal rulemaking procedures. Accordingly, the comment period, which is separate from the litigation, has been extended to January 19, 2022.
Read More

Topics: HR Huddle

HR Huddle - November 30, 2021

Overview

  • In accordance with EO 14042 and the latest updates from the Safer Federal Workforce Taskforce, federal contractors must ensure their employees are fully-vaccinated no later than January 18, 2022 (as opposed to January 4, 2022).
  • Due to a stay by the US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, all activities related to the OSHA COVID-19 Vaccination and Testing ETS have been suspended.
  • The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services is considering permanent approval for remote I-9 verification.
  • The US DOL Wage and Hour Division has announced a final rule to implement Executive Order 14026 that will increase the federal contractor hourly minimum wage to $15.
  • The Biden Administration has reinstated the Executive Order pertaining to Non-displacement of Qualified Workers Under Service Contracts.
  • The US Department of Labor, the National Labor Relations Board, and the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission have come together to end workplace retaliation and promote workers’ rights.
Read More

Topics: HR Huddle

HR Huddle - October 28, 2021

Overview

  • The deadline of December 8, 2021 requiring Federal contractor employees to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 is quickly approaching.
  • The proposed OSHA vaccine mandate for private employers is NOT YET in effect.
  • The EEOC recently updated their Technical Assistance Questions and Answers that address questions about religious objections to employer COVID-19 vaccine requirements and how they interact with federal equal employment opportunity (EEO) laws.
Read More

Topics: HR Huddle

HR Huddle - September 30, 2021

Overview

  • The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has approved the OFCCP Affirmative Action Plan (AAP) Verification Program.
  • The EEOC will soon require contractors to use new EEO tabulation data from 2014-2018 in their AAPs.
  • The OFCCP is rescinding its previously issued notice stating that it would not request, accept, or use EEO-1 Component 2 data. 
  • The Department of Homeland Security has extended the Form I-9 verification flexibility.
  • As part of President Biden’s COVID-19 Plan, an Executive Order (#14043) on COVID Safety Protocols for Federal Workers and Contractors was signed on September 9, 2021. 
  • As a reminder, September 30th is the deadline to file the VETS-4212 report.
  • You are invited to join a national online dialogue on “Advancing Worker Equity at the U.S. Department of Labor.”
Read More

Topics: HR Huddle

HR Huddle - August 31, 2021

Overview:

  • The EEOC has introduced a new Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DE&I) workshop series.
  • The US Department of Labor (DOL) announced a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to create standards and procedures to implement and enforce President Biden’s earlier Executive Order (EO 14026) that will increase the federal contractor minimum wage.
  • Unfortunately, the Coronavirus pandemic is still an issue for workplaces across the country.
  • The EEO-1 Reporting deadline has been changed again to October 25, 2021.
Read More

Topics: HR Huddle