Impact of the Election on HR
I would consider it negligent to not discuss the potential impact of the election of Donald Trump to the presidency. In honesty though, this Tip should be best put in the educated guess category of foreshadowing given that absence of voting history or a definitive political platform that would make prognostication easier. That said there were some clear messages put forth by the President-Elect which, if acted upon (as I suspect many of them will be) will have great impact on HR. Below is an incomplete list of ways in which I anticipate businesses and HR to be impacted in the next four years.
- The rescission of Executive Orders. The good and the bad part of Executive Orders, likely depending on how you view the issue, is that they are easy-come, easy-go. While a President can swiftly sign something that federal contractors and vendors, and government officials must adhere to, subsequent Presidents can just as easily undo the dictate. With a handful of pen strokes I would anticipate President Trump to get rid of the following Executive Orders impacting HR;
- DREAM Act – allowing certain college-educated sons/daughters of illegal immigrants to obtain work authority in the U.S.
- Prohibiting federal contractors from discriminating against employees and applicants because of their sexual orientation or gender identity.
- Requiring federal contractors to provide sick leave to employees.
- Increasing the minimum wage for federal contractors.
- Undoing the new Overtime Regulations.
- Ordering the Department of State to lengthen background checks on foreign workers (e.g. H-1B or L-1 employees) which could increase the amount of processing time at U.S. embassies.
- Undoing the new rules on EEO-1 reporting requirements.
- Enhanced immigration deportation of undocumented foreign workers.
- Less enthusiasm and pro-employee activity from federal enforcement agencies – the Department of Labor (DOL), the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). All agencies, especially the DOL which has risen to significant prominence under President Obama, and the NLRB which became relevant again these past eight years, will be back on the bench.
- Rescission of work visas for Canadian and Mexican skilled workers here on TN visas, under NAFTA.
- No more EEOC lawsuits against employers for sexual orientation or gender identity discrimination.
- Increase in religious, race and gender discrimination and harassment lawsuits.
Thompson Coe’s Tips of the Week are not intended as a solicitation, do not constitute legal advice and do not establish an attorney-client relationship.