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Hiring/Firing Archives

Tomorrow's Workforce

While the author is seventy-two (72) and probably will be out of the workforce in a few years (?), according to the United States Census Bureau (National Population Projection Statistics), Employers will be facing some interesting changes and challenges in their future workforces. Those "changes and challenges" will not only deal with technological issues, but with actual employees!

Employee Resignation - Employer Problem?

While there may be disagreement as to the current status of the work environment, most intelligent/competent people would agree that unemployment is low and the job market is beginning to tighten. The U.S. unemployment rate is at a sixteen (16) year low - 4.3%. In fact, there are 73 counties in the United States with unemployment rates of 2% or less based upon recent Bureau of Labor statistics. In this type of environment, talented Employees in your employ will be in higher demand, especially in a highly competitive industrial environment. Whether or not some have the perception of "manufacturing jobs" as "dirty work or low class" or that being "college educated" is an absolute requirement, the availability of experienced personnel with manufacturing skills is a growing talent shortage. While you may have in place Confidentiality, Non-Solicitation and Non-Compete Agreements, these documents, in and of themselves, do not totally protect an Employer. Employers must have a plan in place to address and deal with the unexpected departure of an Employee.

Being Caught in a Tangled Web

In the March, 2017 Client Alert, the Author submitted an Article on giving guidance to Employers in the creation of good documentation to substantiate and defend Employment Decisions when those Decisions are called into question. While the presence (or lack thereof) of good documentation can be the success or failure in any Employment Litigation, there are certain situations where an Employer's documentation may create a "tangled web" in which an Employer catches himself/herself.

Illinois Attorney General Notifies Job Search Sites About Possible Age Bias

The Illinois Attorney General's office recently sent letters to six job search websites requesting information due to the Attorney General's (AG's) concern that the websites could be violating state and federal laws prohibiting age discrimination. The job search websites include Career Builder, Monster, Indeed, Ladders, Beyond, and Vault. The letters accuse the job search websites of limiting users' ability to list job and education experience that is decades old.

Illinois Court Discusses Standard for Discrimination Based on Arrest Record Under IHRA

The Illinois Human Rights Act (the "Act") was enacted to provide protections to Illinois workers beyond those offered under federal law. Among many other protections, the Act makes it illegal in Illinois to inquire about or use arrest information or expunged, sealed or impounded criminal history information with respect to a person's employment. However, the Act allows an employer to act against (fire, not hire, demote, etc.) an employee or job applicant if the employer is acting on "other information" which indicates that the person actually engaged in the conduct that was the subject of the arrest (besides the basic fact that the employee or applicant was arrested). Arrest information can appear on routine background checks commonly performed as part of the hiring process but employers must be aware of how they can and cannot use this arrest information. The Act generally applies to employers with 15 or more employees employed at least 20 weeks of the year, and also to employment agencies and labor organizations.

Credit Checks On Employees

There is a very recent Case - Ohle v. The Neiman Marcus Group, 12 L 11206, which is a 2016 Illinois Appellate Court Decision that finds The Neiman Marcus Group violated Illinois State Law by running a credit check on potential Sales Associates and denying Ms. Ohle employment because of credit issues. Specifically, the alleged violation involved a violation of the Employee Credit Privacy Act, 820 ILCS 70/et seq.

Best Candidate for the Job

House Bill 5701, known as the "Best Candidate for the Job Act," has passed the Illinois House and is expected to win overwhelming approval in the Illinois Senate.This Bill would bar businesses with 15 or more employees from inquiring about or requiring applicants to disclose their criminal records (i.e., criminal convictions) before offering the individual a job interview or a conditional offer of employment. Once a job interview is offered or a conditional offer of employment is made, the Employer would allegedly be free to perform a background check. One should note that there is extensive activity being conducted by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) with regard to the issue of background checks and, regardless of the holdings in Bill 5701, the Employer could still run afoul of the law in getting background information.

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