law bars discrimination against unemployed workers

SOON-TO-TAKE-EFFECT STATUTE BARS BIAS AGAINST UNEMPLOYED IN JOB ADVERTISING

N.J. Law Journal reports:

New Jersey has a new law, effective in June, that penalizes employers for want ads that say, in essence, unemployed persons need not apply. The measure, N.J.S.A. 34:8B-1, -2, prohibits an employer from publishing or posting on the Internet a job listing providing that the job qualifications include current employment; that jobless applicants will not be considered; or that only currently employed candidates will be considered for the position. Violators will be subject to a civil penalty up to $1,000 for the first offense, up to $5,000 for the second, and up to $10,000 for each subsequent offense. Gov. Chris Christie, signed the bill, A-3359, on March 29 after objections expressed in his original conditional veto were overcome.

Christie’s objections

  • He opined that the bill as drafted potentially clashed with existing state laws regarding civil service promotions and appointments, suggesting a note that the bill would not prohibit requirement of proper licensure or certification for a job, and other clarifying language.
  • Christie called for removing language that prohibited an employer from ‘suggesting’ that an advertised position is available only to employed candidates, which he said was too vague to give employers notice of their obligations under the law because it provides no guidance on what might constitute a “suggestion.”
  • Christie also took issue with the fines originally set forth — $5,000 for each employer for the first offense and $10,000 for all offenses that followed — calling them too severe for the state’s “already over-regulated business community” and pointing to what he called New Jersey’s reputation as overly punitive toward employers and as an unfriendly business environment.
  • Christie suggested that a determination that violations be committed “knowingly or purposefully” must be made, and that language was added

As for potential lawsuits, Christie said, “while I believe the intent of the sponsors was to create an administrative penalty as the sole remedy for violations of the bill’s provisions, I am concerned that the legislation will unintentionally expose employers to costly, unwarranted litigation by failing to expressly provide that a new, private civil cause of action has not been created.”

That added language states: “Nothing set forth in this act shall be construed as creating, establishing or authorizing a private cause of action by an aggrieved person against an employer who has violated, or is alleged to have violated, the provisions of this act.”

N.J. property tax cap, waiver, and referendum

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Commentary

Bravo. I love the fact the legislature and Governor Christie are able to work together to create a piece of legislation aimed at curtailing the arrogant, harsh direct bias against people who have lost their jobs.

The unmitigated gall of some employers to eliminate someone without present employment from their job search, on that basis alone.

Shame on you.

Nicely done Governor and N.J. legislature.

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About Lawrence "Larry" Berezin

I retired from the private practice of law after a 35-year legal career and fight parking tickets for people like you and me. I love sharing valuable information, tips and tricks to help drivers beat NYC parking tickets.

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