By Dorota Gasienica-Kozak, Esq.
King, Spry, Herman, Freund, & Faul, LLC
Chair, Board of Governors, The Chamber
There is only one week remaining to register for the highly anticipated 2018 Lehigh Valley Women’s Summit. If you have not registered yet, or are on the fence about attending, I highly encourage you to join us! It is an exceptional opportunity for all Lehigh Valley women of diverse professional backgrounds and experiences to gather, network, and learn from shared experiences. The 2018 Summit partnership includes the work of The Chamber’s Women’s Business Council, the Women’s Leadership Council of United Way of the Greater Lehigh Valley and Cedar Crest College. We can honestly say that it is THE collaboration of the year!
There are also breakout sessions with topics such as business synergy, education, healthcare, arts empowerment, government involvement, and much more!
The event also features two key note speakers: Dr. Michelle Rozen, nationwide thought leader on human behavior, motivation and leadership, will open the day as our keynote speaker followed by our afternoon keynote Tarana Burke, founder of the #MeToo movement and social justice activist. Dr. Rozen’s expertise in the field of human behavior and human interaction brings her audience unique viewpoints on motivation, leadership and personal empowerment. Tarana has dedicated more than 25 years of her life to social justice and to laying the groundwork for a movement that was initially created to help young women of color who survived sexual abuse and assault.
Please, join us to celebrate one of the most exciting times to be a professional woman in the Lehigh Valley. I look forward to seeing you there!
Guest Blog Post from Don Adriaansen, TITAN Mobile Shredding
The pace of defective products being recalled is climbing, according to a recent study by Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty. A review of more than 100,000 corporate liability insurance claims from over 100 countries between 2011 and 2016, found that defective products or work is the number one cause of liability loss by total value of claims. In fact, defective products account for nearly a quarter of all claims.
Today risk managers must be readily prepared for such a crisis with recall response plans that are nimble and effective. Discontinued products, manufacturing overruns, obsolete inventory, off-spec items, promotional merchandise, counterfeit products, and unused or outdated product packaging should have a destruction plan behind it. "Our clients consistently search for and adopt best practices to reduce potential liability, however challenges can persist," admits Don Adriaansen, co owner of TITAN Mobile Shredding, LLC. Adriaansen alludes to an industrial shoe manufacturer needing to destroy 5500 pairs of shoes in a matter of days. "The shoes were defective and our client's recall plan included immediate destruction with our company."
For companies seeking destruction partners, Adriaansen urges risk managers to be vigilant in seeking a reputable, NAID (National Association of Information Destruction) AAA Certified company that fully recognizes their needs. "Improperly discarded products are a source of liability if misused, and, where trade information is put at risk, it can undermine important intellectual property protections," NAID CEO Bob Johnson said. “Properly destroying outdated, defective, damaged or returned products is just as important as destroying discarded sensitive information." A uniform manufacturer for utility and oil companies had to destroy over 15,000 uniforms and jackets because their company logo had changed. "As a utility company serving homeowners, our client followed their product recall plan to ensure the outdated garments could not enter the public domain," Adriaansen said.
In an effort to better align with product destruction procedures, NAID launched a new certification endorsement in late 2017. TITAN was named the first company to receive the global Product Destruction Endorsement from NAID. Adriaansen added, "This endorsement gives our clients another layer of confidence that their branded, obsolete, defective or overstocked material is securely destroyed and disposed of properly,"
TITAN Mobile Shredding, LLC founded in 2005 and provides secure destruction of documents, records, media, hard drives and products, both with mobile destruction trucks and in their plant. TITAN provides service in eastern Pennsylvania and New Jersey. For more information: www.titanshredding.com, www.naidonline.org
Guest blog post submitted by Norris McLaughlin & Marcus, PA
Over the last veral months, hardly a day has gone by where workplace harassment has not been in the news. High-profile harassment scandals involving individuals in the entertainment and political arenas have led to more and more employees coming forward to share their stories. The number of harassment claims reported to the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) has risen sharply; we do not expect this trend to change any time soon.
Given recent developments, many employers have contacted us to see what steps are needed to ensure a harassment-free workplace and protect against potential liability. The answer is simple: educating and training employees. According to a recent EEOC task force report, an employer seeking to defend against a workplace harassment claim will need to show that it regularly trained its employees on this issue. The EEOC report emphasizes that effective training is live and interactive (rather than video or Internet-based) and tailored to the realities of the workplace. It further emphasizes the need to train supervisors, who are in the best position to address unacceptable conduct before it becomes unlawful harassment. As we discussed at our “Harassment in the Workplace” seminar last week, training supervisors is also important for the employer to avoid strict liability and for the supervisor to avoid personal liability.
In light of increased demand from employers in the Lehigh Valley and beyond, we will be offering a special training event for supervisors. On March 21, 2018, we will be conducting two, half-day sessions of supervisor harassment training at the Best Western Lehigh Valley Hotel & Conference Center in Bethlehem. We are offering these sessions as an alternative to the on-site training we are hired to do for many employers. Like all of our trainings, these sessions will be classroom-style presentations with significant attendee interaction through questions, working through hypothetical situations, and role playing. These sessions will be particularly useful for a variety of employers: those with a small workforce, those with newly-hired or newly-promoted supervisors, and those whose Human Resources or management professionals want to see what is covered in our interactive training sessions.
It is critical now more than ever for employers to engage and educate their supervisors so that they understand their critical role in preventing, combating, and eliminating harassment. It is our goal to do just that in our supervisor harassment training. We encourage you to register your supervisors for one of the training sessions on March 21, and we look forward to seeing you there. Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions about this or other labor and employment training session.