Fostering Diversity, Inclusion and Equity Within the Workplace and the Larger Community

Rebecca Bernhard and Raegan Henderson, Dorsey & Whitney LLP, with client panelists

Our panel of diversity and inclusion experts explored the roles of legal and HR leadership in enhancing diversity and inclusion initiatives, as well as the challenges faced by constituencies such as employees, customers, clients, and the broader communities in which organizations operate.

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Accelerating Change: Legislative Trends in Minnesota & Beyond

Marilyn Clark, Ryan Mick and Molly Sigel, Dorsey & Whitney LLP, with client panelists

Employee advocates have worked hard to change state and local employment laws to be more favorable to employees in recent years, and the trend is accelerating.  This panel explored state and local developments in Minnesota and across the country in the push for new legislation, including stricter laws prohibiting sexual harassment, wage theft prohibitions, predictive scheduling mandates, paid sick and safe time requirements, paid family leave programs and more.  

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What’s New and Cutting-Edge in the Employee Benefits World?  

Liz Deckman, Tim Goodman and Melinda Maher, Dorsey & Whitney LLP

Our benefits experts explored some of the latest employee benefits topics being discussed not only in your human resources and benefit departments, but in the media too.  Topics included benefits for millennial workers, pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs) and pharmacy drug costs, association health plans, “on demand” health insurance, “pay or play” penalty notices, multiple employer retirement plans (MEPs), emerging case law and more!

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Compassion and Compliance: Leave and Accommodation Issues When Employees Experience Mental Health Conditions

Aaron Goldstein and Jillian Kornblatt, Dorsey & Whitney LLP, with client panelists

Employees’ requests for accommodations for mental health issues implicate a variety of thorny legal issues.  An employee’s mental health condition may form the basis for legally protected leave and may qualify as a disability under federal or state law.  This session addressed the legal and practical complexities that arise in handling such situations.  Our experienced practioners provided their insights on best practices in the advisory context and discuss legal defenses if litigation arises.

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Cutting-Edge Issues in Employment Arbitration

Melissa Raphan, Dorsey & Whitney LLP, with client panelists

Employment arbitration remains in the news, with key court decisions and employers’ continued interest in lowering dispute-resolution costs keeping attention on the practice.  Our expert panel, including an arbitrator, discussed hot issues in employment arbitration, including “mandatory” arbitration and other recent developments.

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Managing Legal Risks in the Hiring and Departures of Employees

JoLynn Markison and Kristen Olsen, Dorsey & Whitney LLP

Employees come and employees go.  How can employers protect themselves from legal risks associated with frequent employee transitions?  This panel provided practical, no-nonsense guidance to help address EEO concerns, non-competition and confidentiality agreements, intellectual property and trade secret protections, and other legal issues related to hirings and departures. 

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Employee Discipline in the Age of Viral Videos

Jack Sullivan and Briana Al Taqatqa, Dorsey & Whitney LLP, with client panelists

Our feeds are full of these stories.  A person acts outrageously, often offensively, and is identified by name across hundreds or thousands of tweets or posts—then their employer is identified and pulled into the crisis.  It’s the social media twist on a question that has long faced employers: When does out-of-the-workplace conduct warrant at-work discipline?  What pitfalls face employers who act unwisely?  Our experienced panel discussed real-world scenarios and current best practices for employee discipline and social media policies in the viral-video age.

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