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Salvatore G. Gangemi is a Partner in the Litigation Department of Murtha Cullina and a member of the Labor and Employment Practice Group. He advises clients with respect to state, federal and local employment laws. In addition, he litigates matters involving misappropriation of trade secrets, restrictive covenants, breach of employment contract, fiduciary duty, and other work-related common law claims. Sal also counsels clients on day-to-day issues involving workplace management and administration, including requests for reasonable accommodation for disabilities, for family and medical leave, and wage and hour issues.  He conducts employment law training on a variety of topics, including sexual harassment prevention and wage/ hour compliance.  He also drafts employment policies and agreements, and assists clients in auditing worker classification practices and policies both in the context of the Fair Labor Standards Act and state laws governing independent contractor determinations.

On November 4, 2021, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration of the U.S. Department of Labor (“OSHA”), issued its long-awaited Emergency Temporary Standard (“ETS”), applicable to employers with at least 100 employees.  The ETS was issued by OSHA pursuant to President Biden’s COVID-19 Action Plan, announced last month, and provides minimum requirements in the implementation of mandatory vaccination policies.  The 490 page ETS is effective immediately, and preempts or supersedes any state or municipal law that conflicts with its requirements.
Continue Reading OSHA Issues Long-Awaited Emergency Temporary Standard for Employers

Some people continue experiencing COVID-19 symptoms for weeks or months after first developing COVID-19. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have defined “long COVID” as “new or ongoing symptoms that can last weeks or months after first being infected with the virus that causes COVID-19.”  With the rise of long COVID, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (“HHS”) provided guidance on Long COVID and how it qualifies as a disability under the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”).
Continue Reading In It For The Long Haul: Employer Obligations To Employees With Long COVID Symptoms

In response to COVID-19 vaccination mandates and employer-mandated vaccination policies, federal agencies continue to issue guidance.  The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and the U.S. Health and Human Services’ Office for Civil Rights (OCR) have released additional guidance addressing common employer concerns regarding vaccination status, discrimination, and reasonable accommodations.
Continue Reading Handling COVID-19 Vaccination Mandates: Federal Agencies Continue to Issue Guidance

As we first blogged on May 17, 2019, the Connecticut state hourly minimum wage will increase on August 1, 2021 from $12.00 to $13.00.  The change, made pursuant to Public Act 19-4, “An Act Increasing the Minimum Fair Wage,” will be the third of five scheduled annual increases to Connecticut’s hourly minimum wage since 2019.  A breakdown of the remaining increases under the Act is as follows:
Continue Reading Connecticut Minimum Wage to Increase to $13/hour on August 1, 2021

On January 21, 2021, President Biden issued an Executive Order on Protecting Worker Health and Safety. The order directed the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to take action to reduce the risk that workers may contract COVID-19 in the workplace. On June 10, 2021, OSHA announced a highly-anticipated Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) setting forth steps that employers in the healthcare industry must take to protect workers from COVID-19 risks while the pandemic is ongoing. The ETS will become effective 14 days after it is formally published in the Federal Register.
Continue Reading OSHA Announces COVID-19 Emergency Temporary Standard for Healthcare Industry

On May 5, 2021, Governor Cuomo signed into law the Health and Essential Rights Act (HERO Act), which imposes on all non-public employers significant health and safety standards intended to address the spread of airborne infectious diseases, like COVID-19, in the workplace.  The HERO act is touted as the “first-in-the-nation” statute of its kind, apart from the federal Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSH Act), which until now has governed applicable workplace safety standards.  It is not clear to what extent the HERO Act would be superseded by the OSH Act, but for now employers must ensure that they comply with its mandates.
Continue Reading New York Enacts HERO Act Requiring All Employers to Implement Health and Safety Standards to Address Airborne Infectious Diseases

The CDC has recently recommended that employers appoint “vaccination ambassadors” to encourage employees to get vaccinated.  The EEOC has not commented on the CDC’s recommendation, but based on other pandemic-related guidance issued by the EEOC, employers should consider the employment risks associated with a vaccination ambassador.  These risks include the following:
Continue Reading Is a “Vaccination Ambassador” a Good Idea?