an update for the week of january 29, 2007
today's workplace: the employee rights blog
Minimum Wage: Keeping It Clean, and Getting it Done : The U.S. Senate has just voted to raise the federal minimum wage. After smooth sailing through the House, as part of the "100 Hours" agenda, things hit a snag in the Senate. It's all about taxes -- isn't everything? The Senate so far is seems unlikely to pass a clean bill that does nothing but raise the minimum wage (as the House did), but instead seems determined to cut taxes for small business owners, who -- it is argued -- are adversely affected by the minimum wage. Will it be possible to raise the federal minimum wage -- ever?
this week in the courts
Haynes v. City of Circleville ?(Sixth Circuit; No. 06-3070)
Decision Date: January 25, 2007
In a suit brought by a former police officer and canine handler alleging violations of Ohio's whistleblower statute, common law public policy, and retaliatory discharge arising from his protesting proposed cutbacks in canine training, partial denial of summary judgment for defendant-police chief is reversed where plaintiff's expressions were made pursuant to his duties as a canine handler and patrolman, and thus were unprotected speech as a matter of law. [Sign-in required.]
Mayer v. Monroe County Cmty. Sch. Corp. ?(Seventh Circuit; No. 06-1993)
Decision Date: January 24, 2007
Summary judgment for defendants in a 42 U.S.C. section 1983 suit alleging dismissal of a teacher because of her statement of opposition to the war in Iraq in a social studies class is affirmed where the first amendment does not entitle primary and secondary teachers, when conducting the education of captive audiences, to cover topics, or advocate viewpoints, that depart from the curriculum adopted by the school system. [Sign-in required.]
Chalfant v. Titan Distrib., Inc. ?(Eighth Circuit; No. 06-1414)
Decision Date: January 22, 2007
A judgment and award in favor of an employee in a disability discrimination case is affirmed over employer's claims that: 1) it was entitled to judgment as a matter of law or a new trial because the evidence was insufficient both to support a verdict that it discriminated against plaintiff based on his disability and to allow the district court to submit the issue of punitive damages to the jury; 2) the district court abused its discretion in determining that plaintiff mitigated his damages so as to permit an award of back pay; and 3) it abused its discretion in awarding front pay. [Sign-in required.]
The Good, the Bad, and Wal-Mart
action center
Keep It Clean: Pass the Minimum Wage Increase Now
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