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Transportation Department Expands Drug Testing Panel to Include Certain ‘Semi-Synthetic’ Opioids

Employers regulated by the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) should revise their drug and alcohol testing policies to conform to new DOT regulations that added four “semi-synthetic” opioid drugs to the DOT drug testing panel. The new regulations go into effect on January 1, 2018.

Agency Heads Discuss Changes in Regulatory Direction During Federalist Society Panel

The current leaders of the Department of Labor, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, and National Labor Relations Board addressed transitions and regulatory plans at their respective agencies at a November 16 forum. The Federalist Society, a conservative think-tank, sponsored the panel discussion during which the speakers advocated a more common-sense approach to rulemaking, and supported the Trump administration's efforts to rescind or scale back some of the prior administration's more onerous rules.

Labor Secretary Discusses DOL Priorities During House Committee Hearing

Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta fielded a range of questions on the DOL's priorities during a November 15 hearing before the House Committee on Education and the Workforce. Although members of the Committee inquired about past, current, and future rulemaking and other Department initiatives, the limited duration of Wednesday's hearing allowed Secretary Acosta to deliver only brief responses. The hearing did, however, provide some insight into the DOL's stance on health care, OSHA enforcement, overtime rulemaking authority, apprenticeship, and other workplace concerns.

FMCSA Expands Its Drug Testing Panel Effective January 1, 2018

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration announced in a rule to be published in the Federal Register on November 13, 2017, that it will expand its drug testing panel to include four synthetic opioid drugs: hydrocodone, hydromorphone, oxycodone and oxymorphone.

EEOC’s Online Filing Tool For The Public Is Now Fully Operational

The latest tool that can be used against employers is now fully operational. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s (EEOC’s) online filing portal, or Public Portal, which was tested in five cities over the past six months, was just rolled out across the entire country. As of November 1, individuals will be able to initiate discrimination charges against employers using the EEOC’s digital platform. What do employers need to know about this 21st-century development?

EEOC Opens Online Portal to File and Track Discrimination Charges

Employees seeking help from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) can now go online to file and sign claims. The EEOC announced the launch of a public portal on November 1 to provide online access for individuals to request intake interviews, make appointments and track their charge information.

Employers are Optimistic About Pro-Business Changes at the EEOC

Employers are hopeful that, with the confirmation of President Trump’s nominees for the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, that the agency will adopt a more business-friendly approach to the issues before it. Employers are looking for changes to several Obama-era regulations, including the elimination of the Pay-Gap Disclosure Rule, changes to the EEOC’s stance on LGBT employee protections, and approval of employer wellness incentive programs. The Senate is expected to confirm both nominees soon.

WPI Insider Briefing: Will the New Composition of Federal Agencies Effect Change?

Nine months into President Trump’s term, the pace of nominations and appointments to fill critical position within his administration is accelerating. Action on the nominations to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and Department of Labor (DOL) signals that widely expected changes in workplace policy are indeed forthcoming.

Acosta and Lipnic Share DOL and EEOC Priorities

WASHINGTON, DC - The priority for the US Department of Labor (DOL) is "jobs, jobs and even more jobs," Secretary of Labor Alexander Acosta told an assembly of in-house counsel today. Also addressing the group, the acting chair of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), Commissioner Victoria Lipnic, said the EEOC needs to change course on pursuing systemic lawsuits and touted the agency's success in reducing its backlog of charges.

End of Fiscal Year Filings Signal Business as Usual at the EEOC – For Now

Just like the leaves turning colors, you can count on a flurry of court filings from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) every September as the agency rushes to get cases on file before the end of its fiscal year, September 30. Despite the dramatic changes in Washington D.C., as well as turnover within the top ranks of the historically litigious EEOC’s Chicago Regional Office this year’s filings suggest that it is business as usual for now.