Leap Second!

Facing another hectic day?  Are there deadlines to meet…projects due?  Is day-to-day work piling up?  Sound familiar?  Do you wish you had a few extra hands, but find yourself with no time to recruit, interview and hire?

No worries! Today (June 30th) everyone will get exactly one extra second.

Still not enough time in the day? You can also call Trojan Labor for qualified temporary employees when your workload peaks.

Marijuana Users in Colorado Can Face Disciplinary Action from Employers

When Colorado legalized recreational marijuana it became one of four states to allow it. Twenty states allow medical marijuana.

This has left national employers that have employees in Colorado (and in other states where marijuana is legalized) wondering what they can do if an employee tests positive for marijuana and the company has a zero drug tolerance policy.

The case of a worker in Denver, CO named Brandon Coats has finally given employers an answer. Brandon is a registered medical marijuana user who uses it to relieve pain caused by a car accident that left him paralyzed.

After testing positive for marijuana, he was fired from his job at Dish. Dish has a nationwide zero drug tolerance policy.

Coats filed a wrongful termination complaint saying that he was protected by a Colorado law that makes it illegal to fire someone for carrying out a legal activity during non working hours.

The Colorado Supreme Court ruled that the employer was able to fire Coats for his off-duty and off-premises marijuana use. The court ruled that because marijuana use was still federally illegal it did not qualify as a “legal activity” that would be protected under the Colorado law.

As a result, in Colorado, employers are now able to practice their drug-free workplace policies as long as it is a zero tolerance policy applied to all employees and the consequences are clearly laid out to employees to avoid possible discrimination charges.

The materials available at this web site are for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing legal advice.

 

Increased E-Verify Monitoring and Compliance Activity

According to uscis.gov E-Verify has doubled it’s compliance actions from 42,072 in 2011 to 86,934 in 2014. Compliance actions include emails, telephone calls, and site visits.

Monitoring and Compliance does not fine employers. However if they suspect misuse they can refer the employer to other government agencies like the Office of Special Counsel (OSC) and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). In 2014, Monitoring and COmpliance referred 909 actions to OSC and ICE.

Employers should be aware of the increased surveillance and be sure that they are remaining compliant.

Welcome Trojan Labor Lake Worth and Trojan Labor Knoxville!

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This week we are celebrating the opening of two new Trojan Labor locations. The new locations are in Knoxville, TN and Lake Worth, Florida. We are excited to be able to meet your temporary staffing needs in even more locations. To contact these new locations, please visit our locations page.

 

 

 

Creative Commons photo: “Ijams Knoxville TN 6931″by bobistraveling          
LINK TO ORIGINAL  LINK TO LICENSE

Preventing Heat Related Illness in Outdoor Workers

As the temperatures increase, the need to protect outdoor workers from heat illness also increases. There are two primary types of heat illness, heat exhaustion and heat stroke.

The primary symptoms of heat exhaustion (the milder form of heat illness) include dizziness, headache, nausea, vomiting, rapid heart rate, and cramping. Not all of these symptoms need to be present for a diagnosis of heat exhaustion and they will vary based on the person and the severity.

Heatstroke, is a very severe form of heat illness. Symptoms include red, hot and dry skin, high temperature, confusion, fainting, and convulsions. If you or a coworker is experiencing signs of heat exhaustion or heat illness medical help and advice should be sought protecting workersimmediately.

Some quick tips for heat safety according to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) include:

  • Drink water every 15 minutes even if you do not feel thirsty
  • Look out for your coworkers for signs of heat illness
  • Wear a hat and light colored clothing
  • Rest in the shade
  • Know the location of where you are working in case you need to call 911

Another useful way to prevent heat illness is by utilizing OSHA’s new Heat Safety Tool. The Heat Safety tool is an app that can be found in both the Android and Apple app stores. Using the app, workers and supervisors can calculate heat index and the app displays a risk  level to outdoor workers. The app also features reminders of the various protective measures that can be taken  to ensure worker safety.

To learn more about heat illness and how to prevent, you can view this OSHA factsheet.