Semmes Legal Articles

Semmes offers articles, relative to different areas of law, for information-purposes only. Semmes assumes no responsibility for the accuracy or timeliness of any information provided herein. The articles and information may not apply to your unique situation, and are not intended to be used as a basis for any particular course of action or as a substitute for legal advice.

Preparing a Workplace Violence Prevention Program

June, 2000 | By Donald F. Burke

Recent shootings in Georgia (9 killed in July), Alabama (3 killed in August) and Hawaii (7 killed in November) are a chilling reminder of the vulnerability of America’s workplace. These are the high profile cases which make the nightly news. The sobering truth is that in the United States, homicide is the second leading cause of death in the workplace. For women, it is the leading cause of workplace fatality. Each day in the workplace three people are killed and sixty-one are seriously injured. The attackers are often coworkers, customers, or patients.

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Workers’ Compensation, The ADA, And FMLA – Recent Developments

| By Donald F. Burke

(Labor & Employment Newsletter – 2000) Three sources of employment-related disability rights (Workers’ Compensation laws; The Americans with Disabilities Act; and The Family and Medical Leave Act) frequently intersect and sometimes collide. The key to making defensible personnel decisions is an independent analysis of each law in light of the facts of any given case.…

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How To Be And Remain Union-Free

April, 2000 | By Donald F. Burke

Unions are a mere possibility. They are not inevitable. Since their heyday in the 1950s, the organized workforce has shrunk from around 35 percent to approximately 10 percent of the total private-sector workforce. This trend is continuing and instructs us that employers who take the threat of unionization seriously and have a true commitment to reducing this threat by lawful means are likely to be, and remain, union-free. The key to remaining union-free is “doing what is right and fair” to employees. “Doing what is right and fair” results in a clear advantage to the employer faced by union organizing activities. As a consequence of “doing what is right and fair,” employees will ask the organizer, “who needs the union anyway,” and “why should I pay for what I already have?”

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Gender and Workers’ Compensation Claims

March, 2000

A recent study by the National Council on Compensation Injuries (“NCCI”) found that male workers are more likely to sustain workplace accidents, although females are more likely to file claims for occupational diseases and cumulative trauma. The study, “Gender in Workers’ Compensation Claims,” showed that male employees were more likely to file claims for traumatic…

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House Votes To Block OSHA Rules

March, 2000

In the Winter 2000 edition of our Newsletter, we reported on new ergonomic regulations proposed by OSHA concerning alleged repetitive motion disorders. If adopted, these regulations would have required employers to establish comprehensive plans to monitor, control and reduce workplace hazards associated with repetitive motion disorders through management investigation, employee interviews, additional training, and advice…

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