Podcast: This Week in Background Checks 1/30/2009

So, I think we need to change the name of our podcast series from “This Week in Background Checks” to “Podcast When We Feel Like It”. I guess we could make a New Year’s resolution to do this more frequently, but it’s too late in the year for resolutions at this point. So, if you weren’t following our blog or visiting employeescreen University, here’s what you missed.

And that’s all she wrote.  Have a great weekend!

Ledbetter Law: Obama’s First Law is an HR Law

29ledbetter-600It’s still a mystery where the Obama administration stands on employment screening and background checks in the workplace.  We are getting hints of his stance on immigration with the recent delay’s on E-Verify.  We do know however that Human Resource (HR) and employee rights issues will be a big part of his legislative support initiatives.

WASHINGTON — President Obama signed his first bill into law on Thursday, approving equal-pay legislation that he said would “send a clear message that making our economy work means making sure it works for everybody.”

Mr. Obama was surrounded by a group of beaming lawmakers, most but not all of them Democrats, in the East Room of the White House as he affixed his signature to the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, a law named for an Alabama woman who at the end of a 19-year career as a supervisor in a tire factory complained that she had been paid less than men.

After a Supreme Court ruling against her, Congress approved the legislation that expands workers’ rights to sue in this kind of case, relaxing the statute of limitations.

“It is fitting that with the very first bill I sign — the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act — we are upholding one of this nation’s first principles: that we are all created equal and each deserve a chance to pursue our own version of happiness,” the president said.

He said was signing the bill not only in honor of Ms. Ledbetter — who stood behind him, shaking her head and clasping her hands in seeming disbelief — but in honor of his own grandmother, “who worked in a bank all her life, and even after she hit that glass ceiling, kept getting up again” and for his daughters, “because I want them to grow up in a nation that values their contributions, where there are no limits to their dreams.”

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DHS Postpones E-Verify Requirement . . . Again (1/29/2009)

Earlier this month, we told you that the government postponed enforcement of the requirement that mandates federal government contractors to use the E-Verify system to check the eligibility of their employees to work in the U.S. until February 20, 2009.

This mandate was originally scheduled to take effect on January 15th, but was pushed back because of a federal lawsuit filed Dec. 23 by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and other business groups. The suit contends the government doesn’t have the authority to make E-Verify mandatory for contractors.

Now we’ve learned that the parties have agreed to extend the applicability date to May 21, 2009, and asked the court to stay the proceedings to allow President Barrack Obama’s Administration an opportunity to review the rule. Any solicitations that occur prior to May 21, 2009, will not include the contract clauses that the rule would impose.

Other Related Links:
Federal Contractor E-Verify Rule Is Final!
Federal Contractors Now Mandated to Use E-Verify
DHS Postpones E-Verify Requirement
Department of Homeland Security

Stories of the Absurd: Job Interviews Gone Wrong

Anyone that has experience interviewing applicants for a job probably has a few entertaining stories to share about their adventures in hiring.  HR.blr.com asked their readers to share their most memorable moments and picked out some very funny (and strange) interview blunders to publish on their website.  Some of these are pretty priceless.  Enjoy!

Click here to read “HR Strange But True!  Job Interview Faux Pas, from A to Pee”

employeescreenIQ Now Blogging on Toolbox.com

The folks over at Toolbox.com have asked us to contribute to their HR learning community and we have agreed to do so.  We’ll be posting our thoughts about background checks and relevant stories on a special blog they’ve set up for us.

For those that don’t know, Toolbox.com’s network of online communities enables anyone to access the collective knowledge of a worldwide audience of experienced professionals. Through Toolbox.com, executives and professionals can collaborate with their peers to resolve problems more efficiently, make better decisions by leveraging best practices and lessons learned, and increase their efficiency in the workplace.

According to their website, The Toolbox.com platform integrates the following collaboration and community publishing tools:

  • Professional Networking: Tools that allow professionals to create profiles and build networks with professionals they want to share knowledge with and learn from.
  • Blogs: A community publishing service where professionals post news and knowledge from the front line and community members comment on the entries.
  • Groups: Targeted discussion communities that allow peers to ask and answer questions to solve problems and make decisions.
  • Wiki: An in-depth reference guide and instruction manual created and edited by the community.
  • Vendor Research Directory: A comprehensive listing of vendors and products that integrates relevant user insight based on experience, providing a powerful purchasing tool.

Click here if you are interested in joining.

1/28/2009 Educational Podcast on New York State Correction Law

By now, many of you have heard about the New York State Correction Law set to take effect on February 1, 2009. Seyfarth Shaw’s newest partner in their labor and employment practice, Pam Devata sat down with employeescreenIQ to discuss this new law and Article 23-A. Check out this free podcast below where we discuss this law and how employers can achieve and maintain compliance. No login or information necessary to listen.

Listen to Podcast

Free Podcast with Pam Devata on New York Background Check Law

By now, many of you have heard about the New York State Correction Law set to take effect on February 1, 2009.  Seyfarth Shaw’s newest partner in their labor and employment practice, Pam Devata sat down with employeescreenIQ to discuss this new law and Article 23-A.  Check out this free podcast below where we discuss this law and how employers can achieve and maintain compliance.  No login or information necessary to listen.

1/28/2009 County Job Applicants Could See Tighter Background Checks

[County Job Applicants Could See Tighter Background Checks (1/28/2009) (http://www.baltimoreexaminer.com/local/012809background.html) *Baltimore Examiner* Baltimore County Executive Jim Smith is asking state lawmakers to pass legislation to expand local government’s ability to conduct criminal background checks of job candidates and volunteers.

[Read the full story here . . .](http://www.baltimoreexaminer.com/local/012809background.html)

1/27/2009 With Background Checks, Laws Complicate Hiring

[With Background Checks, Laws Complicate Hiring (1/27/2009) (http://libn.com/blog/2009/01/27/with-background-checks-laws-complicate-hiring/)

*Long Island Business News – Ronkonkoma,NY,USA*

by Claude Solnik Background checks may be a great way to catch thieves. But that doesn’t mean employers are legally allowed to use that information to …

[Read the full story here . . .](http://libn.com/blog/2009/01/27/with-background-checks-laws-complicate-hiring/)

Breaking News: E-Verify Delayed Again – Obama to Review

This just in from NAPBS Lobbyist Montserrat Miller, of Counsel – Greenberg Traurig LLP.

e-verify1

According to Montserrat: Earlier this month, the litigants in the court challenge to the FAR Council’s regulations, mandating a modified version of the E-Verify/Basic Pilot program, reached an accord in which the government agreed to suspend applicability of the rule until February 20, 2009. Today, the litigants agreed to extend the applicability date to May 21, 2009, and asked  the court to stay the proceedings to allow President Barrack Obama’s Administration an opportunity to review the rule.

On January 20, 2009, Rahm Emanuel, President Barrack Obama’s Chief of Staff, issued a memorandum to the heads of all executive departments and agencies governing issuance and possible suspension of regulations. The memorandum stated that agencies should “[c]onsider extending for 60 days the effective date of regulations that have been published in the Federal Register but not yet taken effect.”

Under the new applicability date, which is expected to appear in Friday’s Federal Register, any solicitations that occur prior to May 21, 2009, would not contain the contract clauses that the rule would impose. As previously reported, the rule mandates on most federal contractors and subcontractors a modified version of the E-Verify/Basic Pilot program—requiring reverification of the workforce and creating vicarious liability for subcontractors.