OFCCP Issues Directives Regarding Mediation Procedures and Audit Efficiency

The Department of Labor Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) released three new directives on April 17, 2020 that formalize its mediation procedures, seek to further increase the efficiency of its compliance evaluations (audits) and expand the role of the agency’s Ombudsman. The OFCCP’s recent directives were designed to further reduce the burden on federal contractors, and further confirms that the agency remains operational and committed to its enforcement efforts.

For the full alert, visit the Faegre Drinker website.

More States and Municipalities Impose Mandatory Face Covering and Other Workplace Protections

After an initial wave that saw a focus on closing or limiting “non-essential” or “non-life sustaining” businesses and limiting individual travel, states and municipalities have shifted their attention to protections for those who are continuing to work and travel as they perform essential personal and professional functions. The primary, but not only, area of such focus is on mandating the use of cloth or fabric masks. This change has come as more has become known about how the highly infectious coronavirus spreads, with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) now recommending that cloth face coverings be worn “in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain,” such as grocery stores and pharmacies, “especially in areas of significant community-based transmission.”

These new orders vary in their scope and strictness. The Pennsylvania Department of Health, for example, has issued an order requiring masks to be worn by employees of businesses authorized to maintain in-person operations and further requiring employers to provide such masks. The Pennsylvania order also requires most shoppers to wear masks before entering most stores.

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COVID-19: Staying Engaged, Staying Connected and Staying Calm

As many have now completed several weeks of teleworking, we are acclimating to our new “normal.” While remote working may have seemed like a “dream job” with flexible schedules, casual (sometimes very casual) attire and more efficiency, we have also experienced many unexpected challenges.

Shutdown orders have triggered school closures, limited (if any) travel and nonessential business closures. As a result, the remote working situation has forced many of us to balance work, personal and emotional commitments. Parents and caregivers face stressful situations as they support their children with virtual learning, family members search for ways to support older relatives who may be more vulnerable and everyone seeks answers for the uncertainty we face.

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