Human Resources Laws: Everything You Need to Know
Human resources laws; refer to state and federal laws in the United States that govern human resource management and employment issues.4 min read
2. What Are Human Resources?
3. Human Resources Laws
Updated October 13,2020:
What Are Human Resources Laws?
Human resources laws refer to state and federal laws in the United States that govern human resource management and employment issues. Compensation, recruitment, development, and placement are all considered aspects of human resource management.
What Are Human Resources?
Human resources refer to the individuals who make up the workforce of an entire organization. The term is also applied to business sectors or even entire countries when it comes to labor economics. Human resources also refer to a function within organizations. The purpose of this function is to implement policies and strategies when it comes to the management of individuals. Human resources are a title that is often abbreviated to the acronym "HR."
Human Resources Laws
Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 is one example of a human resource law in the United States. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission administers Title VII. This law is applicable to all employers who have at least 15 employees. This law prohibits employers from discriminating against individuals on the basis of
- national origin
The Department of Labor Wage & Hour Division administers the Fair Labor Standard Act (FLSA). This law establishes the federal minimum wage as $7.25. It also establishes standards for overtime pay and child labor. According to this law, overtime pay is 1.5 times the regular hourly rate. This law also classifies employees as either exempt or non-exempt. The Fair Labor Standard Act also establishes what work time employers need to pay, such as
- travel time
- rest periods
The Department of Labor administers the Family and Medical Leave Act. This act grants employees who have worked a minimum of 1,250 hours in the past year to take a job-protected and unpaid leave for family and medical reasons. This act is only applicable to employees who work at a company that employs at least 50 employees within 75 miles. During a family or medical leave, the employee is still entitled to receive continued group health insurance coverage. The terms and conditions must remain the same as before for the employee.
Four different federal agencies enforce and administer the Americans with Disabilities Act. The EEOC enforces regulations when it comes to private employment. The ADA's Title I prohibits local governments, state governments, labor unions, employment agencies, and private employers from discriminating against individuals with disabilities who are qualified during hiring, job application procedures, advancement, firing, job training, compensation, and other privileges, terms, and conditions of employment. The ADA is only applicable to employers who employ at least 15 employees. The employer also needs to make reasonable accommodations for the disabled person so long as it would not cause undue hardship for the business's operations.
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission administers the Age Discrimination in Employment Act. The ADEA prohibits employers from discriminating against individuals aged 40 or older in wages, hiring, promotions, layoffs, benefits, terminations, and other terms or conditions when it comes to employment. The ADEA law does not prohibit employers from discriminating against individual's younger than 40.
The Department of Labor administers the Occupational Safety and Health Act. The OSHA is the main federal law that governs occupational safety and health in the workplace. The OSHA ensures that employers provide a healthy and safe work environment for their employees. The environment needs to be free of excessive noise levels, exposure to toxic chemicals, mechanical dangers, unsanitary conditions, and heat or cold stress.
The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, or "Obamacare," is responsible for expanding health care coverage via private and public insurance. It also broadens Medicare coverage and Medicaid eligibility. This act establishes exchanges for health insurance. Finally, this act establishes other standards for health care. This law also establishes an employer and individual mandate that requires all employees to buy health care coverage and all employers who have at least 50 employees to offer them health insurance. Employers who don't offer health insurance to their employees must pay a penalty.
Ohio's Workers' Compensation Act provides employees with accommodation if they get injured on the job. Employers are required to give money to a common fund for state insurance. The fund compensates all workers who are injured while working. Employers do not have to worry about full liability if an employee gets injured while working.
Title VII under the Civil Rights Act is overseen by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and applies to employers who have at least 15 employees. Title VII prohibits employers from discriminating against people on the basis of color, race, religion, sex, and national origin.
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission also administers the Equal Pay Act (EPA). The EPA prohibits employers from partaking in wage discrimination between men and women based on sex. This is applicable when men and women do the same jobs that require equal skill, at the same establishment, and under comparable working conditions.
The Pregnancy Discrimination Act is also overseen by the Equal employment Opportunity Commission and prohibits employers from discriminating against employees who are pregnant or suffering from pregnancy-related conditions. Women who are pregnant or suffer from pregnancy-related conditions need to be treated in the same way as other employees or applicants who have the same limitations or comparable abilities. The only exception is elective abortions. The PDA applies to employers with at least 15 employees.
Even if the FMLA does not cover a business, female employees have the right to take a leave for a time that is reasonable for childbirth and pregnancy under Ohio's law. Also, the Commission forces employers to reinstate employees to their original place or a position with similar status and pay without loss of benefits like service credits.
The National Labor Relations Board administers the National Labor Relations Act. The NLRA defines the rights of both employers and employees. Some examples of such rights include the right to engage in concerted activities like strikes and grievances or the right to collectively bargain for mutual aid and protection.
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