Conn Maciel Carey

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On the Basis of Personal Appearance

As you know, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII) is one of the principal federal statutes prohibiting employment discrimination. It prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, and sex (including gender and pregnancy). Other federal statutes that prohibit employment discrimination include Title I and Title V ...
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Repeat Offenders: Commonly Cited OSHA Standards in the Hospitality Industry & How to Avoid Them

The law has always been clear that there is no statutory limitation on the length of time that a prior OSHA citation may serve as the basis for a Repeat violation. OSHA historically looked back only three years for past violations, but the Obama Administration extended it to five years. However, the look back period ...
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Tips, Service Charges, and Automatic Gratuities Continue to Cause Problems for Employers

Hospitality employers nationwide continue to be hit with class action lawsuits alleging failure to properly pay/distribute tips, as well as failure to correctly characterize service charges and automatic gratuities.  These lawsuits have the potential to result in verdicts or settlement amounts more costly than virtually any other employment-related matter.  As a result, it is important to ...
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Lasting Effects of the #MeToo Movement

It has been about a year since the #MeToo movement went viral, spreading greater awareness about sexual misconduct and harassment, and, more generally, the role of women, in the workplace. So, where are we now, and has anything changed? Was it just an awareness movement? Or, have things actually started to shift in the legal ...
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Court Finds that Restaurant Complied with California Law by Requiring Employees Purchasing Discounted Meals to Eat their Meals on Premises

In California, generally an employer may not employ a non-exempt employee for a work period of more than five hours per day without providing the employee with a meal period that may be taken off the premises. Yet, in the restaurant industry employers often provide employees free or discounted meals to be eaten on the ...
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Mitigating Risk for Rogue Employee Speech

Generally, employers can be held vicariously liable for the tortious conduct of an employee committed within the scope of his or her employment.  This often arises in the context of negligence cases, such as automobile and workplace accidents.  However, employers can also be held liable for defamatory statements made by their employees when those statements ...
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New Wave of ADA Website Lawsuits

Recently, there have been a slew of lawsuits filed across the country alleging that owners and operators of hotels and other places of lodging are using websites that violate the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”). These lawsuits are different than the wave of lawsuits and demand letters sent to so many hotels and other places ...
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Cal/OSHA Compels Hospitality Employers to Clean Up Their Act, Ergonomically Speaking

Musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) are the single most common type of work-related injury, but federal OSHA has struggled for decades to develop a coherent regulatory and/or enforcement strategy to address the hazards that cause these ergonomic injuries.  Where federal OSHA fell short, the State of California has picked up the slack, with Cal-OSHA recently finalizing a ...
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Accommodating Pregnancy Under State and Federal Law

Laws requiring both public and private employers to accommodate their pregnant employees have become a trend over the past several years.  Indeed, this past July, Massachusetts became the 22ndstate, along with the District of Columbia, to pass a law that requires an employer to engage in the interactive process and provide an accommodation to a pregnant ...
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Hurricanes Headaches: HR FAQs for Employers

Natural disasters are known for the wreckage and destruction they leave in their wake and the difficulty that follows with recovery. For employers, these difficulties can arise in the form of HR challenges. When employees are affected by disasters, questions about wages, hours, FLMA, benefits, and more can arise. The best way to navigate through ...
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