HR and the Courts

October 20, 2021 9:58 am

Each month, CUPA-HR General Counsel Ira Shepard provides an overview of several labor and employment law cases and regulatory actions with implications for the higher ed workplace. Here’s the latest from Ira. Several States Consider Legislation Aimed at Softening Federal Workplace Vaccine Mandates The Arkansas legislature recently passed legislation which would soften the federal employer... View Article

NLRB General Counsel Releases Memo on Employee Status for Student Athletes

September 29, 2021 1:25 pm

On September 29, National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) General Counsel Jennifer Abruzzo released a memorandum stating her position that student athletes (or “Players at Academic Institutions,” as she refers to them in the memo) are employees under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) and are afforded all statutory protections as prescribed under the law. Abruzzo... View Article

IRS Issues Employer Guidance on COVID-19 Paid Leave Tax Credits

September 22, 2021 8:09 am

On September 7, the U.S. Treasury Department and Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued Notice 2021-53, which includes guidance to employers on reporting the amount of qualified sick and family leave wages paid to employees for leave taken in 2021 as provided by the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) and as amended by the Consolidated... View Article

HR and the Courts

September 21, 2021 8:46 am

Each month, CUPA-HR General Counsel Ira Shepard provides an overview of several labor and employment law cases and regulatory actions with implications for the higher ed workplace. Here’s the latest from Ira. EEOC Brings Its First COVID-19 Teleworking Denial Lawsuit Under the Americans With Disabilities Act   The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) recently brought its... View Article

OSHA Provides Details on Upcoming COVID-19 Emergency Temporary Standard

September 14, 2021 10:32 am

On September 9, President Biden released his COVID-19 Action Plan, which includes a six-pronged plan to combat COVID-19 through increased vaccinations, testing and other strategies. The plan will require employers with 100 or more employees to test nonvaccinated employees on a weekly basis. The White House also announced it will require vaccinations for those working... View Article

Biden Announces New COVID-19 Mitigation Plan

September 9, 2021 9:02 pm

On September 9, President Biden released a new COVID-19 mitigation plan, which includes several new requirements and recommendations for employers, employees, schools and others across the country. The six-part plan includes new policies and strategies to vaccinate more unvaccinated individuals, administer booster shots, keep schools safely open, increase testing facilities and products, protect economic recovery,... View Article

HR and the Courts

August 16, 2021 9:28 am

Each month, CUPA-HR General Counsel Ira Shepard provides an overview of several labor and employment law cases and regulatory actions with implications for the higher ed workplace. Here’s the latest from Ira. Union Leaders Are Split Over Vaccine Mandates  After a year of cooperation with union leaders over health and safety measures promoting worker safety... View Article

Navigating Compliance With a Multi-State Workforce

August 11, 2021 1:38 pm

Over the last year and a half, the rapid implementation and general success of remote work has brought about both new opportunities and new challenges. In particular, the challenges of navigating multi-state compliance issues can be tricky. While there is no one-size-fits-all approach, here are three key points to get you started on the right... View Article

Biden Announces COVID-19 Vaccination Mandate for All Federal Employees and Certain Federal Contractors

July 30, 2021 7:21 am

On Thursday July 29, President Biden announced the release of preliminary guidelines for a COVID-19 vaccination mandate for all federal employees. This decision is Biden’s most recent effort to promote vaccination nationwide and combat the spread of the Delta variant. Overview of Vaccination Mandate Guidelines Every federal government employee and onsite contractor will be asked to attest... View Article

Department of Education Issues Q&A on Title IX Regulations

July 22, 2021 2:11 pm

On July 20, the Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) issued a questions-and-answers (Q&A) resource. According to a press release from OCR, “the Q&A clarifies how OCR interprets schools’ existing obligations under the 2020 amendments” and includes an appendix, which “responds to schools’ requests for examples of Title IX procedures that may be... View Article

HR and the Courts

July 19, 2021 10:07 am

Each month, CUPA-HR General Counsel Ira Shepard provides an overview of several labor and employment law cases and regulatory actions with implications for the higher ed workplace. Here’s the latest from Ira. U.S. Supreme Court Rules Against NCAA in Antitrust Lawsuit, Opening the Path to More Compensation for Student-Athletes  On June 21, the U.S. Supreme... View Article

Maintaining Culture and Connection For Remote Employees

July 14, 2021 11:17 am

Higher ed leaders worked tirelessly last year to facilitate employee transitions to remote work. Now that many employees are firmly rooted in their remote work routine (and in some cases hesitant or unable to return to campus), what was previously a short-term solution is becoming a permanent option at many institutions, and the next challenge... View Article

Education Secretary Testifies on the Department’s Policies and Priorities During House Committee Hearing

July 7, 2021 12:55 pm

On June 24, the House Education and Labor Committee held a hearing on “Examining the Policies and Priorities of the U.S. Department of Education.” Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona testified on behalf of the Department of Education to discuss and answer questions about the department’s goals and commitments to the education community through the elementary... View Article

2021 Benefits Report Examines Higher Ed Parental Leave Practices and More

June 30, 2021 10:32 am

According to the CUPA-HR 2021 Benefits in Higher Education Annual Report, fewer than 40 percent of higher ed institutions offer paid parental leave to new parents. The recently released report examines the benefits offered to higher ed employees, including healthcare plans, wellness programs, paid time off, tuition benefits and retirement. For institutions that offer it,... View Article

CDC Issues Guidance for Higher Ed in Anticipation of an In-Person Fall Semester

June 29, 2021 12:00 pm

On June 4, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued revised guidance for higher ed institutions, providing updated recommendations for institutions considering the partial or full resumption of in-person learning for the upcoming academic year. The guidance is intended to supplement rather than replace federal, state and local health and safety regulations for... View Article

Supreme Court Rules Against NCAA Rules Limiting Education Benefits Offered to Student-Athletes

June 23, 2021 12:09 pm

On June 21, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a narrow but significant decision in NCAA v. Alston. The Court unanimously ruled against the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), deciding that the NCAA’s strict limitations on education-related benefits that higher education institutions can offer to student-athletes violates federal antitrust law. In the ruling, which was written... View Article

Senate Committee Holds Hearings on Name, Image and Likeness Compensation

June 23, 2021 12:00 pm

On June 9 and June 17, the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation held two hearings titled “NCAA Athlete NIL Rights” and “NCAA Student Athletes and NIL Rights,” respectively. During the hearings, senators and witnesses discussed proposals to allow students to monetize their name, image and likeness (NIL) in schools across the country, in... View Article

CUPA-HR Soundbite: How to Ask Employees About Personal Issues Affecting Performance

June 22, 2021 9:24 am

Over the course of the pandemic, higher ed employers may have struggled with how to approach employees whose work performance has been negatively impacted by issues in their personal lives. A recent CUPA-HR webinar, “Trauma-Informed Leadership for Higher Education,” shared ways employers can open the door for disclosure and develop a leadership style that is... View Article

Findings From CUPA-HR’s 2021 Staff in Higher Education Annual Report

June 22, 2021 9:00 am

The pandemic impacted every area of the higher ed workforce, including non-exempt employees. According to CUPA-HR’s recently released 2021 Staff in Higher Education Annual Report, the size of the non-exempt staff workforce saw a drastic decline during the pandemic, an understandable outcome given the number of non-exempt higher education employees whose work can only be... View Article

New Guidance on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Discrimination Under Title VII and Title IX

June 21, 2021 2:24 pm

On June 15 and 16, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) released new resources on federal enforcement of protections against sexual orientation and gender identity discrimination. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled last year in Bostock v. Clayton County that the bar on workplace discrimination based... View Article

Juneteenth — How Will Your Institution Observe the Day?

June 16, 2021 11:05 am

As Congress prepares to vote on legislation establishing June 19 as a federal holiday, we are exploring ways institutions can observe this momentous occasion in U.S. history. Juneteenth, the oldest known celebration commemorating the ending of slavery in the United States, has not always been widely recognized. Expanding your campus community’s knowledge of Juneteenth and... View Article

HR and the Courts

June 14, 2021 10:57 am

Each month, CUPA-HR General Counsel Ira Shepard provides an overview of several labor and employment law cases and regulatory actions with implications for the higher ed workplace. Here’s the latest from Ira. EEOC Issues Guidance That Employers Can Offer Vaccine Incentives to Employees The EEOC issued guidance in late May of this year indicating that... View Article

CUPA-HR Files Comments on Behalf of Higher Education to Inform DOL RFI on Prevailing Wage Levels for Foreign Workers

June 3, 2021 9:58 am

On June 1, CUPA-HR, joined by five other higher education associations, submitted comments in response to the Department of Labor’s Request for Information (RFI) about data and methods for determining prevailing wage levels for temporary and permanent immigrant and non-immigrant employees, including employees on H1-B visas. The DOL’s RFI was issued shortly before the agency... View Article

Mental Health Month Focus: Flexibility

May 31, 2021 11:56 am

May is Mental Health Month, and we’re homing in on three facets of higher education that impact mental health: campus culture, resources and workplace flexibility. This blog post is Part III of the three-part series. Here, we’ll discuss how institutions can lean into flexible work arrangements and how flexible work can support more diverse, equitable... View Article

EEOC Issues Updated Guidance on Vaccinations and Other Pandemic-Related Issues

May 28, 2021 11:19 am

On May 28, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) released updated and expanded technical assistance related to the COVID-19 pandemic and posted a new resource for job applicants and employees. The expanded technical assistance provides new information about how the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA) apply when an employer offers... View Article

ICE Announces Extension and New Employee Guidance to Form I-9 Compliance Flexibility

May 27, 2021 3:16 pm

On May 26, the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) announced an extension of Form I-9 compliance flexibilities that was initially granted last year. Citing continued precautions due to COVID-19, the announcement declared that the flexibilities would be extended until August 31, 2021. The announcement continues March 2020 guidance that allows employers to examine Form... View Article

Mental Health Month Focus: Resources

May 26, 2021 12:14 pm

May is Mental Health Month, and we’re homing in on three facets of higher education that impact mental health: campus culture, resources, and work flexibility. Here, in Part II of the three-part series, we’ll look at some of the barriers that prevent employees from utilizing resources, and how some approaches from the corporate world can... View Article

New Report Highlights Changes to the Professional Workforce in the Wake of the Pandemic

May 20, 2021 8:30 am

The higher ed professional workforce decreased slightly in size during the pandemic, though certain positions saw notable increases. According to CUPA-HR’s 2021 Professionals in Higher Education Annual Report released today, the number of full-time exempt higher ed employees decreased by 0.4 percent in the last year (2020-21), compared to an overall 4.4 percent increase in the... View Article

HR and the Courts

May 18, 2021 8:42 am

Each month, CUPA-HR General Counsel Ira Shepard provides an overview of several labor and employment law cases and regulatory actions with implications for the higher ed workplace. Here’s the latest from Ira. Supreme Court Agrees to Review First Amendment Free Speech Case Filed by Community College Trustee Opposing His College Board’s Decision to Censure Him ... View Article

Mental Health Month Focus: Higher Ed Campus Culture

May 10, 2021 9:29 am

May is Mental Health Month, and we’re homing in on three facets of higher education that impact mental health: campus culture, resources and work flexibility. This blog post is Part I of the three-part series. First, we’ll discuss the importance of creating campus cultures that prioritize and promote the mental health of students, faculty and... View Article

Three Ways HR Can Promote Cultural Appreciation Over Appropriation

May 5, 2021 12:54 pm

Cinco de Mayo is a frequently misunderstood holiday. Many Americans are quick to join in on the celebrations, but few are aware of the origin of the holiday. And while grabbing a traditional Mexican meal or a margarita today is hardly cultural appropriation, the slope can be a slippery one. Cultural appropriation — exploiting or... View Article

House Passes the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act

May 4, 2021 10:02 am

Updated 5/17/21 On May 14, the House of Representatives voted (315-101) to pass H.R. 1065, the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act, which will require employers to make reasonable accommodations for qualified employees affected by pregnancy, childbirth or related medical conditions. The bill, which had amassed 228 cosponsors in the House (208 Democrats and 20 Republicans) ahead... View Article

President Biden Issues Executive Order to Create Task Force on Worker Organizing and Empowerment

April 30, 2021 10:37 am

On April 26, President Biden signed an Executive Order on Worker Organizing and Empowerment (EO), which creates the Task Force on Worker Organizing and Empowerment (Task Force). Citing the decline in union density, the EO and newly created Task Force aim to “encourage worker organizing and collective bargaining and to promote equality of bargaining power between... View Article

President Biden Issues Executive Order Requiring $15 Minimum Wage for Federal Contractors

April 29, 2021 8:24 am

Editor’s Note: Explore the side-by-side comparison of minimum wage EOs from 2014 and 2021. This comparison illuminates the differences between the Obama administration’s executive order and the one issued in April by the Biden administration. On April 27, 2021, President Biden issued an Executive Order (EO) increasing the minimum wage federal contractors pay from $10.95... View Article

5 HR Considerations for Fall Vaccination Planning

April 28, 2021 8:49 am

Whether your institution is mandating, incentivizing or encouraging vaccinations for employees, HR has a critical role to play in how the plan is communicated and how barriers to getting vaccinated are mitigated. Consider overall campus safety and messaging when communicating which groups will and will not be required to be vaccinated this fall. For example,... View Article

Flexible Work Is the Future of Work — Seizing the “New Normal” for Increased Engagement and Productivity

April 27, 2021 8:49 am

This post was contributed by Bryan Garey, vice president and chief human resources officer at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. A transformation of the workplace is taking place right before our eyes. From pandemic-driven urgency, workplaces are succeeding in meeting both customer expectations and employee needs through creative approaches that have redefined where, when and... View Article

New Report Findings: Higher Ed Administrators Overall Received Near-Zero Pay Increases Over the Past Year

April 26, 2021 10:40 am

The severe budget cuts in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic forced many colleges and universities to freeze hiring, cut positions, and, in some cases, decrease salaries. According to CUPA-HR’s recently released Administrators in Higher Education Annual Report, when salary increases occurred in the higher ed workforce over the past year, they tended to go... View Article

HR and the Courts

April 20, 2021 12:26 pm

Each month, CUPA-HR General Counsel Ira Shepard provides an overview of several labor and employment law cases and regulatory actions with implications for the higher ed workplace. Here’s the latest from Ira. Court of Appeals Reinstates Professor’s First Amendment Free Speech and Religious Discrimination Challenge to University’s Preferred Pronoun Policy on Transgender Students  The U.S.... View Article

The Future of Work in Higher Ed

April 14, 2021 11:28 am

If 2020 has given us anything — aside from a new appreciation for the word “pivot” — it’s proof that higher ed is just as capable of adaptation as the corporate world. Before these unprecedented times, big names like Google, Facebook and Netflix were more often at the forefront of workforce innovation conversations than were... View Article

CUPA-HR Soundbite: Can Employers Mandate COVID-19 Vaccines?

April 12, 2021 11:10 am

Note: See the results of CUPA-HR’s April Snap Poll to find out how institutions are structuring their vaccination policies and the types of incentives they’re offering. Mandating or strongly recommending COVID-19 vaccinations for faculty and staff raises a host of legal and practical considerations for higher ed employers. In a recent CUPA-HR webinar presented in... View Article

New Report Highlights Importance of Financial Wellness and Literacy Among Higher Ed Workforce

April 5, 2021 10:33 am

Editor’s note: Be sure to join Paul Yakoboski, senior economist at TIAA Institute, and Melissa Fuesting, survey researcher at CUPA-HR, on Wednesday, May 26 at 2:00 p.m. (ET) for the webinar, “Faculty Retirement Patterns and COVID-19: Impacts, Challenges and Opportunities.” In addition to their findings on changes to the expected retirement age for faculty, Paul... View Article

New Report Highlights Changes to Faculty Workforce in the Wake of the Pandemic

March 30, 2021 8:39 am

The severe budget cuts in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic forced many institutions to freeze hiring, cut positions and, in some cases, decrease salaries. The recently released 2021 CUPA-HR Faculty in Higher Education Report highlights the overall changes to faculty size and salaries over the past year. In the academic year prior to the pandemic... View Article

COBRA Subsidies Included in the American Rescue Plan Act

March 23, 2021 11:21 am

On March 11, President Biden signed into law H.R. 1319, the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARPA), which is the $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief bill that included various provisions aimed at providing relief to employers, employees and consumers recovering from the economic burdens imposed on them during the pandemic. Included in this bill was... View Article

The Impact of COVID-19 on Retirement Readiness for the Higher Ed Workforce

March 22, 2021 11:06 am

Editor’s note: Be sure to join Paul Yakoboski, senior economist at TIAA Institute, and Melissa Fuesting, survey researcher at CUPA-HR, on Wednesday, May 26 at 2:00 p.m. (ET) for the webinar, “Faculty Retirement Patterns and COVID-19: Impacts, Challenges and Opportunities.” In addition to their findings on changes to the expected retirement age for faculty, Paul... View Article

HR and the Courts

March 17, 2021 11:33 am

Each month, CUPA-HR General Counsel Ira Shepard provides an overview of several labor and employment law cases and regulatory actions with implications for the higher ed workplace. Here’s the latest from Ira. Spouse’s Lawsuit — Attempting to Hold the Employer Liable for COVID-19 Infection Allegedly Contracted From Husband After He Contracted COVID-19 at Work —... View Article

DOL Delays Effective Date of Final Rule Altering Prevailing Wage Levels

March 15, 2021 8:00 am

UPDATE: On March 22, DOL issued a proposal to further delay the effective date of the rule by 18 months or until November 14, 2022, along with corresponding proposed delays to the rule’s transition dates. DOL has provided a 30-day comment period on the proposal and announced its intention to issue a Request for Information... View Article

NLRB Withdraws Proposed Rule on Student Workers

March 12, 2021 12:55 pm

On March 12, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) announced it would be withdrawing its 2019 Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (proposed rule) addressing the extent to which students who perform services for private higher education institutions are considered employees under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA). The official Notice of Withdrawal will be published in the... View Article

House Passes the PRO Act

March 11, 2021 10:00 am

On March 9, the House of Representatives passed H.R. 842, the Protecting the Right to Organize (PRO) Act, which is a massive labor reform bill designed to increase union density. Criticized as a “left-wing wishlist” for unions by House Republicans, the bill passed the House mostly along party lines by a vote of 225-206, with... View Article

3 Ways HR Can Help Support and Retain Working Mothers

March 10, 2021 1:58 pm

A recent Gallup article noted that the workforce is currently down 500,000 more women than men compared to before the pandemic. The cause? Many women have left or drastically reduced their working hours to care for young children or school-age children who are learning virtually at home. That so many working mothers have left the... View Article

5 CHROs Use CUPA-HR’s DEI Maturity Index to Energize Their DEI Efforts

March 9, 2021 2:07 pm

Higher ed institutions know how critical it is to have a diverse workforce, equitable hiring and compensation practices, and an inclusive work environment for all. Yet this work can be daunting for HR teams who don’t know where to start. After all, improving DEI for faculty and staff doesn’t have a one-time quick-fix solution —... View Article

Executive Order Directs Review of Trump Administration’s Title IX Rule

March 8, 2021 4:25 pm

On March 8, President Biden issued an Executive Order (EO) titled, “Guaranteeing an Educational Environment Free from Discrimination on the Basis of Sex, Including Sexual Orientation or Gender Identity.” The EO sets forth the administration’s policy that “all students should be guaranteed an educational environment free from discrimination on the basis of sex, including discrimination... View Article

Using Data and Empathy to Drive Decisions About COVID-19 Workforce Reductions

March 3, 2021 1:09 pm

The higher ed workforce has been hit hard due to COVID-19-related causes. According to a recent article by The Chronicle of Higher Education, 650,000 higher ed jobs were lost last year. With potential budget reductions on the horizon, this number is sure to climb. While workforce reductions may be necessary for some institutions to stay... View Article

House Passes Equality Act

February 26, 2021 2:25 pm

On February 25, the House of Representatives passed H.R. 5, the Equality Act by a vote of 224 to 206. Three Republicans joined Democrats to pass the bill that would make employment discrimination and other forms of discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity unlawful. The bill would amend existing civil rights laws —... View Article

10 Creative Ways to Celebrate Employee Appreciation Day During COVID-19

February 24, 2021 10:42 am

Employee Appreciation Day is right around the corner (March 5). As the typical initiators of employee appreciation and recognition, HR offices are looking for creative ways to show appreciation for faculty and staff on tighter budgets and modified for the remote work environment. While the usual catered lunch or in-person awards ceremony may not be in... View Article

New CUPA-HR Brief Finds Crucial Need for Succession Planning and Focus on Diversity for the Higher Ed Skilled Craft Workforce

February 17, 2021 1:13 pm

The higher ed skilled craft workforce possesses the skills necessary to maintain and improve the physical facilities and infrastructure of college campuses. However, the aging of this workforce and the lack of younger workers to take the place of older employees as they retire puts institutions in a challenging position to attract new talent. CUPA-HR’s Higher... View Article

HR and the Courts

February 15, 2021 9:13 am

Each month, CUPA-HR General Counsel Ira Shepard provides an overview of several labor and employment law cases and regulatory actions with implications for the higher ed workplace. Here’s the latest from Ira. Biden Administration Issues Executive Order Calling on OSHA to Determine Whether There Is a Need to Issue Emergency Temporary Standards Protecting Workers From... View Article

Senate Committee Holds Hearing on DOL Secretary Nominee

February 12, 2021 9:00 am

On February 4, the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee held a hearing on the nomination of Boston Mayor Marty Walsh to serve as the Secretary of Labor under the Biden administration. Walsh was nominated to serve as Secretary of Labor on January 7, 2021, beating out many other front runners for the... View Article

Strategies to Become More Resilient in Work and Life

February 8, 2021 11:34 am

The time and energy it takes to lead and move multiple projects forward at our institutions and get things done on our personal checklists takes a toll on higher ed HR pros, and at times can leave us in a low place. When we reach this point, we need helpful nudges to get us back... View Article

Finding Strength in Giving Back: Reflections on Higher Ed, the Pandemic and Racial Equity

February 3, 2021 12:24 pm

This blog post was contributed by Yves Salomon-Fernández, president of Greenfield Community College in Massachusetts.  As a community college president, I found this past year especially hard. As we now know from the data recently released by the National Student Clearinghouse, the community college segment within higher education suffered the worst decline in enrollment. Not... View Article

How COVID-19 Has Impacted Faculty Retirement Patterns — Highlights From the 2020 Higher Education Financial Wellness Survey

January 27, 2021 11:19 am

Editor’s note: Be sure to join Paul Yakoboski, senior economist at TIAA Institute, and Melissa Fuesting, survey researcher at CUPA-HR, on Wednesday, May 26 at 2:00 p.m. (ET) for the webinar, “Faculty Retirement Patterns and COVID-19: Impacts, Challenges and Opportunities.” In addition to their findings on changes to the expected retirement age for faculty, Paul... View Article

HR Care Package — Resources for Self-Care

January 25, 2021 10:49 am

For HR, most of 2020 was spent adapting to the new world of work all while taking on hefty workloads to ensure our institutions continued to run smoothly during the pandemic. This constant cycle of challenging work pushed our mental health to its limits. As we step into a new year, let’s take time to... View Article

HR and the Courts

January 19, 2021 9:48 am

Each month, CUPA-HR General Counsel Ira Shepard provides an overview of several labor and employment law cases and regulatory actions with implications for the higher ed workplace. Here’s the latest from Ira: Trump Workplace Diversity Training Executive Order Halted by Federal District Court Nationwide A federal judge blocked President Trump’s ban on “divisive” workplace diversity... View Article

DOL Announces Final Rule Raising Prevailing Wage Minimums for H-1B Visas

January 13, 2021 10:11 am

On January 12, 2021, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) announced a final rule that will raise government prevailing wage minimums for foreign professional workers under the H-1B and other visa programs. The rule revises a previously released Interim Final Rule (IFR) that took effect on October 8, 2020, but was subsequently struck down by... View Article

Cal/OSHA’s Emergency Temporary Standard Implements COVID-19 Workplace Safety Protocols

December 16, 2020 11:42 am

On November 30, the California Division of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (Cal/OSHA) issued a final Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) implementing COVID-19 workplace safety protocols that went into effect immediately and apply to all employees and places of employment within the state, including universities and colleges, regardless of size or industry sector. As indicated... View Article

COVID-19-Related Emergency Relief Provisions Set to Expire in 2020

December 15, 2020 12:22 pm

Two laws Congress passed in the spring of 2020 to provide temporary economic and regulatory relief to individuals and organizations impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic are due to expire by the end of this year. The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) and the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) included significant... View Article

HR and the Courts

December 14, 2020 12:47 pm

Each month, CUPA-HR General Counsel Ira Shepard provides an overview of several labor and employment law cases and regulatory actions with implications for the higher ed workplace. Here’s the latest from Ira: Many U.S. Federal and State Courts Cancelling Jury Trials Due to Surges in Positive COVID-19 Cases Bloomberg News reports that courts across the... View Article

Summaries of November and December CUPA-HR Letters and Advocacy Efforts

December 11, 2020 2:04 pm

In late November and early December, CUPA-HR joined the American Council on Education (ACE) and other higher education associations in sending letters to Congress and federal agencies regarding policies that significantly impact institutions of higher education. Below is a list and summaries of the letters CUPA-HR has recently signed onto. Letter to President-Elect Joe Biden... View Article

Great CUPA-HR Reads of 2020

December 1, 2020 11:55 am

Between pivoting with the COVID-19 pandemic, confronting racial issues, making strides toward more equitable workplaces, and managing already hectic workloads, higher ed HR has had its hands full this year. Yet in the middle of it all, resilient HR pros continue to find ways to positively impact the higher education landscape. As 2020 comes to... View Article

HR and the Courts

November 16, 2020 1:08 pm

Each month, CUPA-HR General Counsel Ira Shepard provides an overview of several labor and employment law cases and regulatory actions with implications for the higher ed workplace. Here’s the latest from Ira: University Maintenance Director’s Email to Employees Regarding Coworker’s COVID-19 Exposure Protected by the First Amendment A federal district court judge recently denied a... View Article

10 Ways to Be a Better Advocate for Your Institution’s LGBTQ Community

November 11, 2020 12:53 pm

Rob Keel, policy analyst and HR communication specialist at Motlow State Community College and a 2019-20 CUPA-HR Wildfire program participant, highlights takeaways from the National LGBTQ Task Force’s Creating Change Conference to help higher ed HR pros become better resources and advocates for the LGBTQ communities on their campuses.  In January 2020, I traveled from... View Article

CUPA-HR, Other Associations Ask DOL to Rescind Flawed Rule on Prevailing Wage Minimums for H-1B Visas

November 9, 2020 8:27 am

On November 9, CUPA-HR and 18 other associations submitted comments regarding the Department of Labor (DOL)’s Interim Final Rule (IFR) entitled “Strengthening Wage Protections for the Temporary and Permanent Employment of Certain Aliens in the United States.” DOL’s IFR was unveiled on October 8 and went into effect immediately — preventing the regulated community, including... View Article

Potential Labor and Employment Policies Resulting From the 2020 Elections

October 21, 2020 1:16 pm

Regardless of who wins the 2020 elections, the higher education community can expect big changes in labor and employment policy. Which policy initiatives are pursued will depend on who occupies the White House and which party controls either (or both) chambers of Congress. To help CUPA-HR members navigate and understand the possible outcomes, we have... View Article

8 Practical Ways Higher Ed HR Leaders Can Build Trust

October 19, 2020 9:21 am

In times of uncertainty, employees turn to leaders they trust to guide the path forward. In their CUPA-HR virtual annual conference session, “Grabbing at Smoke, or Building Trust?,” Sheraine Gilliam-Holmes, executive director and chief HR officer at Austin Peay State University, and Donovan Johnson, compensation analyst at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, and a 2019-20... View Article

HR and the Courts

October 12, 2020 2:28 pm

Each month, CUPA-HR General Counsel Ira Shepard provides an overview of several labor and employment law cases and regulatory actions with implications for the higher ed workplace. Here’s the latest from Ira: Courts Revisiting Telework as a Reasonable Accommodation Under the ADA — Asthmatic Employee Awarded COVID-19 Related Telework Accommodation by Federal Court as a... View Article

Rising to the Occasion and Our Calling: 3 Takeaways From the 2020 Virtual Annual Conference

October 8, 2020 12:08 pm

Those who participated in this year’s virtual annual conference experienced powerful and inspiring messages from keynote speakers and higher ed leaders on timely topics, such as systemic racism in the higher ed workplace; how the COVID-19 pandemic has changed the higher ed landscape, provided growth opportunities and strengthened bonds and trust; and much more. Here... View Article

USCIS Fee Rule Increase Temporarily Blocked

October 5, 2020 10:28 am

On September 29, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California preliminarily enjoined the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) from implementing or enforcing any part of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Fee Schedule and Changes to Certain Other Immigration Benefit Request Requirements rule (Fee Rule). The Fee Rule was set to take effect... View Article

Trump Issues Executive Order on Combating Race and Sex Stereotyping

October 2, 2020 10:13 am

CUPA-HR Signs on to Letter to President Trump Regarding the Executive Order on “Combating Race and Sex Stereotyping” (October 8, 2020) On September 22, President Trump issued an Executive Order (EO) on “Combating Race and Sex Stereotyping.” Once implemented, the EO will impose new requirements on federal contractors, including colleges and universities, with respect to content... View Article

Senate Committee Discusses Name, Image and Likeness Compensation for Intercollegiate Student-Athletes

September 18, 2020 10:04 am

On September 15, the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee held a hearing titled, “Compensating College Athletes: Examining the Potential Impact on Athletes and Institutions.” The hearing was part of ongoing Senate discussions on potential federal legislation to permit student-athletes to receive compensation for their name, image and likeness (NIL) while participating in National... View Article

Department of Education Finalizes New Rule

September 14, 2020 9:58 am

On September 9, U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos announced the publication of a final rule that implements President Trump’s Executive Order 13864, Improving Free Inquiry, Transparency, and Accountability at Colleges and Universities. The new rule conditions federal research or education grants on compliance with the First Amendment for public institutions and compliance with stated... View Article

HR and the Courts

September 10, 2020 9:41 am

Each month, CUPA-HR General Counsel Ira Shepard provides an overview of several labor and employment law cases and regulatory actions with implications for the higher ed workplace. Here’s the latest from Ira: Transgender Professor Seeks Preliminary Injunction Prohibiting State of Arizona Healthcare Plan From Denying Coverage for Medically Necessary Gender-Affirming Surgery A professor at an... View Article

August Round-Up of Important DOL Guidance and Regulations

September 3, 2020 1:18 pm

During the month of August, the Department of Labor (DOL)’s Wage and Hour Division (WHD) issued a variety of regulations and guidance documents focusing on key employment issues related to COVID-19, including the paid leave policies within the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) and employers’ responsibility to track telework hours. Below is a brief... View Article

HR and the Courts

August 17, 2020 11:45 am

Each month, CUPA-HR General Counsel Ira Shepard provides an overview of several labor and employment law cases and regulatory actions with implications for the higher ed workplace. Here’s the latest from Ira: Federal Court Dismisses In-House Attorneys’ Retaliation Claims But Allows Sex-Based Salary Discrimination Claims to Proceed A federal district court trial judge recently dismissed... View Article

Summaries of Recent CUPA-HR Letters and Other Advocacy Efforts

August 4, 2020 11:26 am

Over the last few weeks, the American Council on Education (ACE), with the support of CUPA-HR and other higher education organizations, sent letters to Congress and federal agencies regarding policies impacting institutions of higher education as they relate to the COVID-19 pandemic. Below is a list and summaries of the letters CUPA-HR has recently signed... View Article