The Workplace a Podcast by CalChamber

The Workplace is a podcast by CalChamber that provides expert and entertaining commentary on issues critical to California employers and employees.  Episodes will include discussions about California employment laws, legislative proposals, and national and state politics.

Commentary on the podcast should not be considered as legal advice.

Episode 32

Sexual Harassment, Discrimination Investigations Are Required by Law

What are the obligations when an employee steps forward with a sexual harassment complaint? In this episode of The Workplace, workplace investigations expert Lisa Buehler joins CalChamber Executive Vice President and General Counsel Erika Frank to talk about emerging issues and best practices when conducting a workplace sexual harassment investigation.

Episode 31

Benefit Trends That Keep Employees Engaged at Work

In this episode of The Workplace, CalChamber Executive Vice President and General Counsel Erika Frank and employee benefits expert Vinny Catalano discuss trends in employee benefits that are low in cost to employers, but high in value to employees.

Episode 30

Ageism in the Workplace: Prevent Liability by Focusing on Abilities, Not Age

In this episode of The Workplace, CalChamber Executive Vice President and General Counsel Erika Frank talks with employment law expert Jennifer Shaw about the pitfalls of age-based stereotyping, succession planning, and mandatory retirement.

Episode 29

Critical Employment Bills Awaiting Action by Governor

In this episode of The Workplace, CalChamber Executive Vice President and General Counsel Erika Frank, CalChamber Policy Advocate Robert Moutrie, and longtime Capitol lobbyist Chris Micheli discuss the important bills affecting employers that await action by the Governor and some of the related last-minute political scenarios.

Episode 28

What Employers Should Know About Wage Garnishment


In this episode of The Workplace, CalChamber Executive Vice President and General Counsel Erika Frank is joined by employment law expert Jennifer Shaw to discuss what responsibilities employers have when served with a wage garnishment order for an employee.

Episode 27

Tips on Open Enrollment, Employee Benefits Strategies

In this episode of The Workplace, CalChamber Executive Vice President and General Counsel Erika Frank is joined by employee benefits expert Vinny Catalano of Gallagher Benefit Services to discuss open enrollment options for employers and trends in benefit offerings. In addition, Frank and Catalano underscore the importance of communicating the value of the benefits provided to employees.

Episode 26

From Coffee to Roasted Asparagus—How Prop. 65 Is Leading to Excessive Product Warnings


CalChamber Executive Vice President and General Counsel Erika Frank and CalChamber Policy Advocate Adam Regele discuss Proposition 65 and how it has been used as a vehicle to unscrupulously sue businesses across the state.

Episode 25

What to Do If Immigration Officials Come Knocking


In this week’s episode of The Workplace, CalChamber President Allan Zaremberg discusses with immigration expert Kevin Johnson, Dean of the UC Davis School of Law what employers are required to do if Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials raid a job site or ask to inspect records.

Episode 24

Update on Key Bills Affecting California Employers

In this week’s episode of The Workplace, CalChamber President Allan Zaremberg, and CalChamber Executive Vice President Jennifer Barrera update listeners on the status of important pending legislation that will have a huge impact on employers and California’s economy—legislation on the Dynamex decision, privacy, pay for striking workers, and arbitration agreements.

Episode 23

Revenue Boost Calls Into Question Motivation for New Taxes; A Conversation with Dan Walters

In this episode of The Workplace, CalChamber President Allan Zaremberg discusses California’s revenue surge and continued calls for new taxes with California political expert Dan Walters. The two also discuss pressing issues at the State Capitol including both Dynamex and privacy legislation.

 

Episode 22

Emergency Wildfire Smoke Protection Regulation Now In Effect—What Employers Need to Know

CalChamber Policy Advocate Robert Moutrie and CalChamber Executive Vice President and General Counsel Erika Frank review the steps employers should take to comply with Cal/OSHA’s recent wildfire smoke protection emergency regulation.

Episode 21

Disaster Preparedness in the Workplace — It’s More Than Duck and Cover

CalChamber executives Allan Zaremberg and Erika Frank discuss the importance of emergency preparedness in the workplace. The two give an overview of employers’ responsibilities to their employees during times of crisis.

Episode 20

Vaccination Controversy Highlights Wellness Issues in the Workplace

In this episode of The Workplace, CalChamber Executive Vice President and General Counsel Erika Frank is joined by employment law expert Jennifer Shaw to discuss the current vaccination controversy and other issues that come into play as employers attempt to keep their workers healthy and productive.

Episode 19

Is It Back? Renewed Talk about a Sales Tax on Services Raises Concern for California Businesses

In this episode of The Workplace, CalChamber President and CEO Allan Zaremberg is joined by Loren Kaye, president of the California Foundation for Commerce and Education, to discuss a proposal that threatens to impose a sales taxes on services in California. The two examine the implications this policy would have on the state’s budget and business climate.

Episode 18

What Not to Wear – To Work

It’s summertime in California and that means flip flops, shorts, and tank tops. Unfortunately, when the weather heats up, employees can be tempted to show up for work wearing attire that seems more appropriate for the beach than the office. In this episode of The Workplace, CalChamber Executive Vice President and General Counsel Erika Frank is joined by employment law expert Jennifer Shaw to discuss what steps employers can take to ensure that employees are appropriately dressed and groomed for their work environment.

Episode 17

Employment Law Update: What’s Moving and What’s Not


In this episode of The Workplace, CalChamber Executive Vice Presidents Erika Frank and Jennifer Barrera discuss the status of several employment law proposals being considered by California lawmakers. While some of the bills that would have impacted employers — including expansion of sick leave — have been stopped for the time being, others continue to make their way through the process. Listen in as the two employment law experts provide an overview of where things stand on employment law legislation at the State Capitol.

Episode 16

Regulations May Require Employers to Monitor Air Quality/Provide Respirators


In this episode of The Workplace, CalChamber Executive Vice President and General Counsel Erika Frank is joined by CalChamber Policy Advocate Robert Moutrie to discuss proposed regulations developed in the wake of California’s recent wildfires. Cal/OSHA is considering new rules to provide protection to employees when air quality is diminished to certain levels.

Episode 15

CalChamber Podcast Focuses on Meals and Breaks at the Office

In this episode of The Workplace, CalChamber Executive Vice President and General Counsel Erika Frank discusses the ins and outs of California’s meal and rest break rules with attorney and employment law expert Michael Nader of the Olgetree Deakins law firm.  The discussion delves into the importance of meal and rest breaks being taken by employees and explores ways employers can protect themselves against potential litigation.

Episode 14

CalChamber Podcast Discusses Employee Misclassification

In this episode of The Workplace, CalChamber Executive Vice President and General Counsel Erika Frank discusses exempt employee misclassification with employment law expert Jennifer Shaw. In the podcast, they discuss the differences between exempt and non-exempt employees and the common mistakes employers make when classifying their employees as exempt.

Episode 13

New CalChamber Podcast Discusses “Ghosting” in the Workplace

In this episode of The Workplace, CalChamber General  Counsel and Executive Vice President Erika Frank discusses employee “ghosting” with Attorney and Employment Law Expert Jennifer Shaw.  The two describe this new phenomenon and the legal implications that may arise for employers.

Episode 12

Go-Go Economy Fuels Record State Budget Surplus

On this episode of The Workplace, CalChamber President Allan Zaremberg talks with Loren Kaye, president of the California Foundation for Commerce and Education, about the private sector’s role in creating a record state budget surplus. On the heels of the Governor’s May Budget Revision, the two provide in-depth perspective on the wisdom of California’s spending priorities, especially given the state’s volatile tax system.  Zaremberg and Kaye provide recommendations on how the state can protect both its economy and job creation well into the future.

Episode 11

Texting in the Workplace and Other Cautionary Employment Tales

On this episode of The Workplace, CalChamber Executive Vice President and General Counsel Erika Frank is joined by Jennifer Shaw, Founding Partner of the Shaw Law Group, to discuss recent employment law snafus making headlines. Frank and Shaw discuss the implications of events highlighted in three recent news stories: The first recounts a company’s job announcement seeking “preferably Caucasian” candidates; the second involves an employer’s attempt to establish a no-touching workplace; and the third describes problems that can be created in the workplace due to texting mishaps.

Episode 10

Marijuana and the Workplace

In the newest episode of CalChamber’s podcast, The Workplace, CalChamber Executive Vice President and General Counsel Erika Frank is joined by employment law attorney Jennifer Shaw to discuss how legalization of marijuana is impacting both workers and business owners in California.  The two employment law experts dive into details about the profound impact that legalization of recreational pot is having on both recruitment and retention of employees.  They further discuss the parameters of both pre-employment and reasonable suspicion drug testing and provide perspective on an employer’s ability to maintain a drug free workplace.

Episode 9

Legislative Trend: Expanded Leaves of Absence

California often is recognized as one of the most family-friendly states given its myriad of employment leaves of absence and protections. Despite the state already being a leader on this issue, however, expanding or creating more leave policies continues to be an active area of legislation. Erika Frank, CalChamber Executive Vice President of Legal Affairs and General Counsel, and Jennifer Barrera, CalChamber Executive Vice President, review and discuss three bills seeking to expand protected leaves of absence in California.

Episode 8

Labor Law Helpline: What’s Your Question?

California’s complex employment laws prompted 22,000 calls to the CalChamber Labor Law Helpline in 2018. On the latest episode of The Workplace podcast, CalChamber President Allan Zaremberg and Erika Frank, CalChamber Executive Vice President of Legal Affairs and General Counsel, discuss the most frequently asked questions—a good indicator of the compliance issues that are the most challenging for California businesses.

Episode 7

Taxes, Taxes and More Taxes

Even though California is enjoying its ninth straight year of economic growth and the state has a solid budget surplus and a brimming Rainy Day Fund, California legislators can’t seem to resist the temptation to raise taxes. This week on The Workplace, CalChamber President Allan Zaremberg and Loren Kaye, president of the California Foundation for Commerce and Education, highlight just a handful of the more than $15 billion in new taxes policymakers are considering. On the list of possible items lawmakers would like to tax is everything from medicine to tires and businesses.

Episode 6

Men and #MeToo Movement

The latest episode of CalChamber’s The Workplace podcast focuses on men and the #MeToo movement. As more publicity is being given to instances of sexual harassment around the country, men have responded to news stories and other developments in a variety of ways. Some will no longer meet with female colleagues or socialize with women coworkers to protect themselves from the possibility of being wrongfully accused of harassment. Erika Frank, CalChamber Vice President of Legal Affairs and General Counsel, is joined by Jennifer Shaw, President of the Shaw Law Group, to shed light on these issues and provide perspective on the #MeToo movement.

Episode 5

Legislative Changes Needed to Fix California Consumer Privacy Act

The California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) is a sweeping privacy law that applies to businesses of all sizes across almost every industry. In this episode of The Workplace, CalChamber President Allan Zaremberg is joined by CalChamber Executive Vice President Jennifer Barrera and Policy Advocate Sarah Boot to talk about the challenges of implementing the CCPA. The trio digs deep into the potential costs to both business and consumers posed by the CCPA as they discuss the many unworkable provisions of the law. They conclude the conversation with a discussion of needed legislative fixes before the CCPA goes into effect on January 1, 2020.

Episode 4

Say Cheese: Cameras In The Workplace, On-line Communication, and the Internet Test Bounds of Privacy

This episode explores new areas of concern and issues generated for employers by the prevalence of technology on the job site or in the office.  Erika Frank, CalChamber executive vice president, legal affairs and general counsel, and Ellen Savage, HR adviser with CalChamber’s Labor Law Helpline, talk about what is private – and what is not – at work.  The conversation provides both entertaining and helpful insight into the issue, particularly given the multitude of federal and state constitutional guarantees, limitations imposed by federal and state statutes, and case law.

Episode 3

California Leads Presidential Election Landscape in 2020

California voters have achieved a new milestone: the distinction of being an early presidential primary state due to the Legislature moving the date up three months from June to March 2020. Martin R. Wilson, CalChamber executive vice president, public affairs, is joined by Andrew Acosta, Acosta Consulting, and Steve Maviglio, principal of Forza Communications. The trio discusses how the early presidential primary will have a major impact on the California election cycle, accelerating all the traditional deadlines, such as candidate filings and contribution disclosures, as well as the imperative of building out the necessary infrastructure to wage a successful and expensive race for office.

Episode 2

Dynamex—The Elimination of Independent Contractors?

The California Supreme Court’s April 2018 decision in Dynamex Operations West, Inc. v. Superior Court of Los Angeles completely changed the way in which an individual is classified as an independent contractor versus an employee in this state. In today’s edition of The Workplace podcast, CalChamber President and CEO Allan Zaremberg and Executive Vice President Jennifer Barrera review what the decision means for California employers and independent contractors.

Episode 1

Employers Lead the Charge: Preventing Sexual Harassment in the California Workplace

Welcome to The Workplace! Join Erika Frank, CalChamber executive vice president, legal affairs and general counsel, and CalChamber policy advocate Laura Curtis as they discuss sexual harassment in the workplace, the #MeToo movement and how to lead the charge in preventing harassment from happening in your office.