SCOTUS Grants Opt-Out Right on Obamacare Contraceptive Rule

In a 5-4 decision, the U.S. Supreme Court today ruled that privately held companies can opt out of the contraceptive clause of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) on religious grounds. The requirement in question mandates that certain company-provided health insurance policies include contraceptive services. The ruling came in a review of a lawsuit brought by […]

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HHS Proposes Auto-Renewal of Current Obamacare Policies

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is floating a proposal for public commentary to automatically renew everyone who signed up for coverage under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) during the open enrollment period that ended in March. The rule would apply to everyone who signed up on a state website or on the […]

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Massachusetts Enacts Highest Minimum Wage Law Among All States

Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick today signed S.2195, “An Act Restoring the Minimum Wage and Providing Unemployment Insurance Reforms,” a bill that "gradually raises the minimum wage to $11 over three years, lowers unemployment insurance (UI) costs for employers across the state, strengthens safety protections for workers and makes permanent the multi-agency task force charged with […]

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SCOTUS Rules Obama 2012 Recess Appointments Unconstitutional

In a unanimous decision, the Supreme Court today ruled that recess appointments made by President Obama while the Senate was holding "pro-forma" sessions but otherwise on a short break overreached his constitutional authority. "Because the Senate was in session during its pro forma sessions, the president made the recess appointments before us during a break […]

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More Employers Now Eliminating Jobseekers Because of Social Media Searches

A survey by Career Builder found that 51 percent of employers who research job applicants on social media end up rejecting them, up from 43 percent in last year's survey and 34 percent in 2012. So what are employers finding on social media that’s prompting them to eliminate candidates from consideration? The most common reasons […]

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Ikea to Raise Store Minimum Wage to $10.76 an Hour

Ikea, the Swedish home goods megastore, is raising the minimum wage it pays its workers at 38 U.S. locations to $10.76 an hour beginning Jan. 1, 2015, a 17-percent increase over the current $9.17-an-hour rate. "The happier the co-worker, the happier the customer and the better the overall shopping experience," said Rob Olson, acting U.S. […]

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DOL Releases Funds for Unemployment Assessment, Training

The Department of Labor (DOL) today awarded $68,745,912 to 37 states, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and the District of Columbia to implement or continue re-employment and eligibility assessments for Unemployment Insurance beneficiaries. "Offering newly unemployed Americans access to a full array of job training and placement services will help to reduce time spent […]

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OSHA Launches Interactive Game to Help Identify Workplace Hazards

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has launched a new interactive training tool to help small businesses effectively identify hazards in the workplace. Employers and workers can virtually explore how to identify common workplace hazards in the manufacturing and construction industries. Users of the new training tool will learn not only hazard identification skills […]

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New HHS Secretary to Hire Obamacare Czar

In her first week in office, Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell has already shaken up the Affordable Care Act (ACA, aka Obamacare) personnel structure and announced plans to hire a "marketplace chief executive officer," in other words, a CEO for HealthCare.gov. In addition, she hired Andy Slavitt, group executive vice president of […]

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DOL Proposes Rule to Expand FMLA to Same-Sex Couples

Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez announced today a proposed rule extending the protections of the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) to all eligible employees in legal same-sex marriages regardless of where they live. The proposal would help ensure that all families will have the flexibility to deal with serious medical and family situations without fearing […]

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