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September 2014 Archives

Union Membership Statistics

There is a very old adage that "numbers can't lie, but liars can figure" and that adage may be applicable to the most recent statistics issued by the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics with regard to union membership. Those "union statistics" indicate that the union membership rate - the percentage of wage and salary workers who were members of the union for 2013 - remains at 11.3%, the same percentage as existed in 2012. The number of wage and salary workers belonging to unions remains at 14.5% but is substantially down from 1983, the first year in which comparable union data was available which established the figure in 1983 at 20.1%.

Illinois Pregnancy Protections Expanded

On August 26, 2014, Illinois Governor Pat Quinn signed into law House Bill 8 (HB8) that amends the Illinois Human Rights Act (IHRA) by placing "new obligations on employers" with regard to their pregnant employees. While the law will not take effect until January 1, 2015, employers should be cognizant of the new obligations imposed upon them.

Domestic Violence and Child Abuse - A Problem for All of Us

Certainly the last few weeks have not been very pleasant for the National Football League/Roger Goodell and for the Federal Judiciary. The NFL has had to deal with domestic violence/child abuse involving its stars (Adrian Peterson, Ray Rice, Jonathan Dwyer, and, thanks to Gloria Allred, Brandon Marshall from a 2007 incident) and the Federal Judiciary has had to deal with the spousal abuse of United States District Court Judge Mark Fuller, an Alabama Federal Judge, who took a plea deal for beating his wife in August. While the drumbeats have been extremely loud for Commissioner Goodell to resign and for Judge Fuller to give up his lifetime appointment as a Federal Jurist, all of these cases point to the fact that no one and no employer can fully insulate itself from the scrutiny and polarizing beliefs if someone is accused of domestic violence/child abuse.

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