Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Are your federal law postings up to date?

As employers well know, posters aren’t just for teenagers’ rooms. Recent legal developments have required updates to employer’s posting requirements designed to inform employees of their rights under federal EEO and labor laws. On October 22, 2009, the EEOC posted on its website a revised "Equal Employment Opportunity is the Law" poster that reflects current federal employment discrimination law, including two new laws – the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act of 2008 (effective on January 1, 2009) and the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008 (effective November 21, 2009). The revised poster also includes updates from the Department of Labor. The updated EEOC poster is available in English, Arabic, Chinese and Spanish. Up to 10 copies of the poster may be ordered from the EEOC's website at

Employers covered by the Fair Labor Standards Act must post the Department of Labor’s minimum wage poster, WHD Publication 1088, in each of its establishments. The federal minimum hourly wage increased to $7.25 per hour on July 24, 2009, the last of three scheduled increases put in place by The Fair Minimum Wage Act of 2007. Accordingly, the Labor Department’s Wage and Hour Division revised the poster in July 2009 to reflect the latest minimum wage increase. However, the agency has indicated that the July 2007 version of the minimum wage poster, which reflects the 2007 amendments to the Fair Labor Standards Act, is still valid and employers may continue to post that version.

For federal contractors, the Beck postings are no longer required, but a new, broader posting requirement is on the way. President Barack Obama issued an Executive Order (EO) on January 30, 2009 revoking an EO issued by former President George W. Bush that required non-exempt federal contractors and subcontractors to post a "Notice of Employee Rights Concerning Payment of Union Dues or Fees." The notice that had been required by Bush's EO 13201 was limited to informing employees of their rights under the decisions of the US Supreme Court in Communications Workers of America v Beck [109 LC ¶10,548, 487 US 735 (1988)], and related cases. In EO 13496, Obama replaced Bush's mandate with a broader obligation requiring federal contractors to inform their employees of all their rights under the under federal labor laws, including the National Labor Relations Act.

On Monday, March 30, 2009, the Department of Labor published a final rule, effective that date, rescinding the Beck posting regulations (74 FR 14045). On August 3, 2009 the Labor Department issued a notice of proposed rulemaking and request for comments on its regulation to implement President Obama's EO 13496 (74 FR 38488). The proposed rule contains the content to be required for the posting. The comment period on the proposed rule ended on September 2, 2009; thus, a final rule should be issued late this year or early next year.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks so much. This is the best summary I have been able to find on this subject.