Stokes Wagner Law Firm
Stokes Wagner

Georgia’s Smoke-Free Air Act and Atlanta’s current smoking ordinances allow smoking only in establishments that deny access to minors or have a private room for smokers with an air-handling system separate from the main air system. The Atlanta City Council has voted to amend the ordinance to abolish these two smoking exceptions for smoking indoors. The amended ordinance’s main purpose is to protect Atlanta citizens from secondhand smoke which, according to the City Council, causes the same diseases as directly using tobacco products.

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In January 2020, Nevada will become the first state to bar employers from refusing to hire a prospective employee due to a positive drug test for cannabis. The new law carves out some exceptions for employees who operate a motor vehicle or whose cannabis use could adversely impact the safety of others but protects all other job applicants.

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The City of Chicago becomes the latest city to pass predictive scheduling legislation, also known as the “Fair Workweek Ordinance.” Effective July 1, 2020, this Ordinance requires certain employers to give most workers early notice of their schedules and to pay employees whose schedules are changed after they receive notice.

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The EEOC collects workforce data from employers with more than 100 employees (a lower threshold applies to federal contractors). The data collected is used for several purposes, including enforcement, employers’ self-assessment, and for research. Historically, such employers have been required to file annual Employer Information Reports (“EEO-1 Component 1 Reports”) disclosing the number of employees by job category, race and gender.

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The California Consumer Privacy Act (“CCPA”) is set to take effect January 1, 2020. Since the announcement, employers have been raising concerns about whether the provisions of the act will include personal data collected from job applicants and employees. In May of 2019, the Assembly passed Assembly Bill 25 (“AB 25”), which explicitly narrowed the definition of “consumer” to exempt a business’ applicants and employees, among others. Just this week, the Senate significantly amended AB 25 by sunsetting the employee exemption on January 1, 2021.

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On July 10, 2019, Governor Cuomo signed two new bills that expand New York State’s equal pay Labor Law § 194. These new bills specifically (1) expand the scope of New York State’s equal pay law to all protected classes and (2) prohibit employers from asking an applicant about their prior salary history.

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The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) announced that it will be collecting data on pay and hours worked from 2017 and 2018. The deadline for employers to submit this information to the EEOC is September 30, 2019.

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As you may have heard, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (“ICE”) plans to begin the previously postponed raids across the country starting this Sunday (7/14/19). From what we can gather, ICE plans to target at least 10 cities to arrest individuals here illegally who have court orders for removal from the country. The raids were initially scheduled for 4th of July but were postponed.

While there has not been confirmation on the targeted cities, the raids are expected in Atlanta, Baltimore, Chicago, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New Orleans (likely postponed here due to the hurricane Barry), New York, and San Francisco.

While we have no reason to believe ICE will target individuals at work, this is a good time to educate yourself on your right regarding law enforcement requests for information. Please feel free to reach out to Stokes Wagner with any questions.

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Dogs have always been our best friends, so it’s not surprising that more and more restaurants are making strides to ensure their patrons can dine without leaving their fur babies at home. But with great change comes great liability. Here are some points restaurant owners should consider so dogs can dine without incident.

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On July 3, 2019, Governor Gavin Newsome signed into law the CROWN Act (Creating a Respectful and Open Workplace for Natural Hair.) While New York City recently became the first locality to enact such legislation, California is the first to ban natural hair discrimination statewide.

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