On July 28, 2022, the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) issued important clarifications about the certification process through its Federal Contractor Portal (Portal). As previously reported, the Portal is new this year and required federal contractors and subcontractors (contractors) to certify the status of their annual affirmative action plan (AAP) for each establishment before June 30, 2022. In its bulletin update communicated to subscribers by email, the OFCCP stated that — although the portal remains currently open — it has not extended the June 30 deadline and that contractors that have not yet registered and certified their AAP compliance should do so as soon as possible. But it also explained that the agency will consider those contractors that requested assistance from the OFCCP on or before June 30, 2022 — but have not yet completed registration or certification because of a pending request for assistance — to have met the June 30 deadline.
Leave Benefits for Adoption: Alabama’s Adoption Promotion Act (the Act) takes effect on July 1, 2022 and requires employers with 50 or more employees to provide eligible employees with up to 12 weeks of unpaid family leave for the birth or adoption of a child. The Act also mandates that employers who provide paid leave benefits and additional leave considerations for the birth of a child provide similar benefits for adoption.
Marketplace Contractors: Effective July 1, 2022, marketplace contractors are not considered employees under workers’ compensation and unemployment insurance laws (if certain conditions are met). Marketplace contractors are persons/entities who enter into agreements with marketplace platforms to be connected with third parties seeking services — such as drivers for Uber and Lyft.
Expansion of Employer Definition under Sexual Harassment Discrimination: Arizona enacted a change to the sexual harassment provisions of existing employment discrimination law, so that the law applies to any employers or their agents who commit sexual harassment or retaliate against someone for reporting it.
On May 20, 2022, the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) released its 2022 Corporate Scheduling Announcement List (CSAL), which notifies 400 supply and service establishments (locations) of upcoming audits. Federal contractors should immediately review the 2022 CSAL because it serves as the only advance notification to contractors of upcoming audits.
The CSAL also specifies the type of audit the contractor will undergo: Full Compliance Review (Establishment Review), Corporate Management Compliance Evaluation (CMCE) or Functional Affirmative Action Program (FAAP) Review.
Employers increasingly rely on computer-based tools to assist them in hiring workers, monitoring worker performance, determining pay or promotions, and establishing terms and conditions of employment. Automatic resume-screening software, hiring software, chatbot software, video interviewing software, analytics software, and employee monitoring and worker management software allow employers to find efficiencies in day-to-day employee management. Software may scan resumes and prioritize the use of certain keywords, rate employees based on their keystrokes, facial expressions or speech patterns, and obtain information about qualifications and cognitive abilities before a hiring manager ever takes a second look.
On May 12, 2022, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) issued separate guidance addressing employers’ use of algorithms and artificial intelligence (AI) in employment-related decision-making. Both technical assistance documents focus specifically on how employers’ use of these technologies may adversely impact individuals with disabilities and violate the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
Significant new guidance from the Department of Justice (DOJ) and Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) advises employers that use of AI and algorithmic decision-making systems in employment-related decisions may violate the Americans with Disabilities Act. In other AI news, automated decision-making and algorithmic bias became focal points at three major industry conferences held in the past month, as industry leaders work to get ahead of the rising tide of regulations targeting AI.
Employers face new challenges in navigating state and local pay equity laws. New York City joins a number of other jurisdictions that now require employers to disclose pay ranges when advertising job postings – including for incumbents as well as new hires. This law is set to take effect on May 15, 2022 (unless delayed by pending legislation discussed below). The New York City Commission on Human Rights (the “NYCCHR”) recently published a fact sheet providing guidance with regard to Local Law 32 of 2022 (the “NYC Law”). The NYC Law requires all covered employers to include a minimum and a maximum salary in any advertisement for a job, promotion, or transfer opportunity.