Despite the best of intentions to comply with the myriad of laws, orders and recommendations and to “do right” by employees while dealing with the current pandemic and recession, employers remain vulnerable to a whole host of potential COVID-19-related claims. Husch Blackwell’s Labor & Employment team is closely following the ever-changing guidance and return-to-work orders

Over the last several days, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has updated its recommendations for food manufacturers and food retailers during the COVID-19 public health emergency.  While FDA continues to underscore that there is no evidence of food or food packaging being associated with the transmission of COVID-19, FDA as updated its recommendations based upon updated guidance provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Continue Reading FDA Updates Recommendations on Social Distancing and Use of PPE for Food Companies

On May 16, 2018 and June 13, 2018, we blogged about Gerawan Farms, a California agricultural company whose members wanted to decertify the United Farm Workers. The employees voted in 2013 but the California Agricultural Labor Relations Board (ALRB) impounded the ballots and refused to count them. The ALRB held that Gerawan had committed

On May 16, 2018, we blogged about California’s compulsory arbitration requirements for unionized agricultural workers, the California Supreme Court’s rejection of constitutional challenges to that statute, and the petition for certiorari filed by the employer, Gerawan Farms. A majority of Gerawan’s employees signed a petition seeking an election on whether to decertify the union.  The

 I.       Introduction. 

Unlike federal labor law, the California Agricultural Labor Relations Act (ALRA or Act) authorizes agricultural workers to form unions and engage in collective bargaining.  If the parties cannot reach agreement on the terms of the contract, the Act requires mediation.  If mediation is unsuccessful, the ALRA requires the mediator to dictate the terms

The Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) provides broad protection to whistleblowers. Section 402 of the statute applies to any person or entity engaged in manufacturing, processing, packing, transporting, distribution, reception, holding or importation of food, but it is not clear whether the provision applies to farms, at least until the food has been harvested.

The

On January 6, 2015, Husch Blackwell obtained summary judgment for ConAgra Foods, ending a two-year collective action filed by supervisor employees alleging they had been misclassified as exempt under federal and state wage and hour laws. The case is Evelyn Garrison, et al. v. ConAgra Foods Packaged Foods, LLC, No. 4:12-cv-00737-SWW. With this result,

In June, four Hawaii growers agreed to pay $2.4 million to settle claims related to the growers’ use of Thai H2-A visa workers supplied by farm labor contractor Global Horizons. The EEOC, which filed suit on behalf of the Thai workers, alleged that Global Horizons misled impoverished Thai workers to pay high registration fees to

According to Federal Judicial Caseload Statistics, nearly five percent more Fair Labor Standards Act cases were filed between April 1, 2013 and March 31, 2014 than during the same period in 2012-2013.  This 2013-2014 total of 8,126 newly-filed FLSA cases is nearly 2,500 more than the 2008-2009 total of 5,644.