From the Director

Last October I moderated a panel at the Georgetown Hospitality Law Summit with board members Harry Johnson, Christian White, and Denise Keyser. As we discussed joint employer and other labor issues, the consensus in the room was clear: in two weeks or so Hillary Clinton would be elected president and the labor and employment policies of the Obama Administration would continue. Wow, we were wrong!

As I sit here preparing for ALIS Law, Cornell’s HR and Hospitality Conference, and CIHLER’s five upcoming Roundtables, I, like everyone else, am wondering what the new administration’s policies will be. Specifically, what is the future of:

  1. The overtime law that was stayed by a district court in Texas (will the government not appeal?);
  2. The joint employer before the NLRB  (will there be two new Board members who will overturn the BFI holding?);
  3. The numerous NLRB holdings and rules over the last several years, including quick elections, micro-units, persuader rules, social media policies, privacy policies, sit-ins, and use of computers;
  4. The practice of employers and employees agreeing to card-check neutrality;
  5. The EEOC’s focus on systemic, transgender, sexual orientation, and religious discrimination;
  6. The EEOC’s focus on litigation;
  7. The Department of Labor’s focus on joint employers, contractors, and overtime eligibility;
  8. The class action waiver in arbitration agreements; and
  9. The viability of pre-dispute arbitration agreements.

Of course, a new administration’s policies should not affect cases that are currently in the court system brought by private lawyers. Conversely, the administrative agencies’ new leadership, the two new NLRB members, and one and maybe more new Supreme Court Justices could seriously alter the labor and employment law landscape. What is perplexing, however, is how our world was changed. As any casual observer knows, President Trump is not a traditional Republican nor are many of his supporters. Will the new president continue traditional Republican labor and employment policies or will his administration create a new paradigm?

CIHLER will be monitoring, and hopefully providing a leading voice to, the new world of labor and employment relations. In February we will host our 5th Annual Traditional Labor Relations Roundtable; in April we host a Roundtable on Trump’s first 93 days; and we will host regional roundtables in LA on January 25, and then Chicago in MayNYC in June, and LA in July. Additionally, we will work the AH&LA on numerous policies to help the industry, and we hope to work with the employers, employee advocates, and government agencies to create an arbitration system that will create a fair, efficient mechanism to resolve employment disputes.

We live in interesting times and CIHLER, because of its members and supporters, will be at the forefront.