Employers and job seekers are often unclear as to their rights and responsibilities under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Some employers look upon the ADA with a little fear –- fear of litigation, fear that accommodating someone with a disability costs too much money, or fear that accommodations will mean more work for the employer or their staff. Perhaps the biggest misconception is that the ADA is a law for “those people”. In reality, the ADA is for all of us. According to the Social Security Administration, one in four of today’s twenty-year olds will become disabled before they retire. The ADA is a landmark civil rights law that provides for equal treatment of all people with a disability.
As a federal contractor, you have specific responsibilities related to the employment of individuals with disabilities. As per the amended Section 503 of The Rehabilitation Act, the goal for disability hiring is 7% across all job groups.
Preparation is key and there are steps you can take in advance. Here are some guidelines to help you prepare:
In January 2016, New York became one of many recent states to enact pay equity legislation (California, Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois, Louisiana, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Oregon, Vermont) The purpose of the state-driven legislation is to clarify factors of the federal Equal Pay Act (EPA). The EPA requires employers to provide equal pay to men and women in the same establishment for the same work, defined as work requiring equal skill, effort and responsibility and that which is performed under similar working conditions. Then why are these state laws necessary?
The Equal Pay Act was signed on June 10, 1963, and amended the Fair Labor Standards Act, with a purpose of abolishing wage disparities amongst men and women. The EPA prohibits employers from discriminating on the basis of sex by paying wages to employees at a rate less than the rate paid to employees of the opposite sex for equal work on jobs requiring equal skill, effort, and responsibility, and which are performed under similar working conditions. For an employee to establish a prima facie case under the EPA, she must show that:
March is Women’s History Month, an annual observation dedicated to highlighting the contributions of women in history. The female presence in the workforce is increasing in just about every industry. With women working more, their earnings have become a growing share of the family income. For those currently looking for work, here are some strategies to employ during your job search.
Put your Social Skills to Work and Network Effectively
According to a Brandwatch blog, women are biologically wired for social networking. When it comes to the Internet, women are more engaged than men. Take advantage of your digital savvy and use the Internet, social media and job sites as the basis of your job search. The natural charisma, articulation, and grace of women can be powerful tools of persuasion. Show off your confidence by creating conversations, leading groups, and attending multiple in-person networking events. LinkedIn is a forum for connecting and networking. There are many helpful groups that you could join to interact with like-minded people. All-women networking groups have cropped up in recent years and can be easily found through LinkedIn.
On February 23, 2016, America’s Job Exchange (AJE) co-hosted a webinar with Jackson Lewis on ‘A Comprehensive Outreach Plan for OFCCP Compliance.’ The webinar was very well received with more than 600 in attendance and there were several important and relevant questions posed to the panelists.
Laura Mitchell, Partner, Jackson Lewis, and Gary Cowan, Director of Compliance, America’s Job Exchange (AJE), were the speakers and they covered two important topics:
- Effective veteran outreach for OFCCP compliance and
- AJE’s Outreach Management System – a tool available for customers to record outreach activities easily and in a central location
According to the U.S. Department of Labor, there are many industries (healthcare and technology for instance), that are growing faster than the talent pool available. Casting a wider net means you will attract more skilled workers to fulfill your hiring needs.
Most corporations have a business mandate to hire candidates regardless of race, color, or national origin. For many, their recruiting policy and strategy is developed to ensure compliance with equal opportunity employment regulations (EEO). Establishing a recruiting policy and strategy focusing on hiring diverse talent however, has larger implications (and benefits) than meeting EEO requirements: