All of us are responding to unique circumstances regarding the corona virus. At this juncture, the middle ground between mild concern and hysteria is to recognize that this is a rapidly evolving situation, and therefore vigilance, monitoring of CDC updates, and continual risk assessment are appropriate for every aspect of the business, including employee relations.
As a highly communicable disease, COVID-19 raises potential employment law compliance issues related to, among others: wage and hour laws, including the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and equivalent state laws; the ADA and local equivalents; OSHA; the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) and equivalent state laws; and local and municipal paid sick leave laws. Company policies, practices and contracts, including collective bargaining agreements (CBAs), must be considered alongside the essential practicalities of continuing business operations with as little disruption as possible.
Our legal friends at Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman have prepared an excellent memo outlining the approach businesses should take with respect to responding to the COVID-19 virus. The memo can be accessed by clicking HERE.
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