I have not (and probably will not) taken the time to read the two pieces of legislation that passed Congress last week and which are generically being called Healthcare Reform, but fortunately others who have an interest in employment law are doing so. Although in many ways the whole bill is very much an employment law bill because of the impact on employee benefits, some portions of it are more employment law related.
The top two that have been found so far:
- Jon Hyman at Ohio Employer’s Law Blog, has found an amendment to the Fair Labor Standards Act that will require employers to provide reasonable unpaid breaks for nursing mothers. Do you know? Healthcare bill requires lactation breaks;
- Jason Zuckerman writing at today’s workplace discusses new whistleblower provisions, also added as amendments to the Fair Labor Standards Act, Health Care Reform Bill Creates New Whistleblower Protections.
Since it appears that the Fair Labor Standards Act was the vehicle of choice for many employment law related aspectes, a quick scan of the texts for that statute found the following:
In H.R. 3590 [pdf] (the Senate Bill that was passed by the House without change):
- Sec. 1511 – automatic enrollment (into health benefit plans) for employees of large employers (200 full time employees);
- Sec. 15122 – Requirement of all employers to inform employee of coverage options, including the existence of the newly created Exchanges;
- Sec. 1588 – Protections for employees, the whistleblowing statutes that Jason Zuckerman wrote about;
- Sec. 4207 – Reasonable break time for nursing mothers that Jon Hyman found.
The “fix-it” bill, H.R. 4872 [pdf] which may be signed into law today, has no references to the FLSA.