Sexual harassment has been in the news a lot lately, with a number of high-powered CEOs stepping down after being accused of sexual misconduct. Justin Caldbeck, a Silicon Valley investor and the co-founder of Binary Capital, has stepped down after being accused of sexually harassing a number of female founders working in technology. Six women reported that Caldbeck groped them, sent text messages late at night and made unwanted advances towards them.
It has been 50 years since the Age Discrimination in Employment Act was first enacted to protect workers over the age of 40 from missing out on employment opportunities and advancements solely because of their age. Unfortunately, workplace discrimination based on age is still a big part of our working world.
In Rhode Island and elsewhere, workplace harassment is a real concern as numerous people fall victim to it. While there are various forms of harassment that could land an offender in hot water, sexual harassment is a particularly significant issue. This is something that affects both men and women, and it is a problem that far too many employers may just brush off as no big deal. It is a big deal, however.
There are federal and state laws in place to allow eligible employees to take time off of work to take care of their personal lives. The Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) allows eligible employees who work for employers with 50 or more workers to take up to 12 weeks off work for a variety of reasons, including the birth of a child, serious illness and caring for a sick relative. This allows employees to take time off for legitimate reasons without the fear of losing their jobs. However, according to the non-profit legal advocacy group A Better Balance, many Walmart employees report that the company does penalize employees for utilizing their sick leave.
Medical marijuana has been legalized in Rhode Island, as well as 28 other states and Washington, D.C. However, the use of medical marijuana to treat pain and various medical conditions is a hot topic in the news these days.