The #MeToo Backlash and Other Emerging Trends in Employment Law
Matthew Gomes authored an article for ACC Georgia’s December 2019 newsletter discussing emerging trends in employment law that are requiring companies to rethink policies and practices.
As a result of the #MeToo movement, studies show that male managers are uncomfortable participating in common work activities with women, which could continue to restrict already underrepresented women in their development and networking opportunities. There are a number of rules employers can implement to fight this backlash including to focus feedback on performance and talent instead of appearances and create public environments for meetings.
Arbitration agreements, zero-tolerance workplace violence policies, marijuana in the workplace and paternity leave are among the other trends resulting in changed policies throughout companies.
The process of “banning the box,” referring to companies removing the “check box” portion of job applications when asking about criminal records, is also gaining momentum. “This practice already is prohibited in more than 20 states and 150 municipalities across the country. The Fair Chance Act, which prohibits federal agencies and their contractors from requesting that applicants disclose criminal history before receiving a conditional offer, passed the U.S. House of Representatives in July 2019 and is now in the Senate. Companies should review policies to ensure compliance,” Gomes concluded.
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