On October 28, 2016, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) announced that it has launched the beta version of worker.gov, the DOL’s new website. This new website is intended to give employees “access to information about their rights that responds directly to their challenges” while removing the guesswork for the employee as to which law might apply in the employee’s situation.
According to the DOL, the new website is designed to provide workers access to critical information about their rights . . . in a way that makes sense for them.” Rather than asking employees to identify the violation, the new website asked employees to “answer a few simple questions about their lives and jobs” and then will “guide them to the information they need” without workers needing “to know the name of a single statute or government agency.”
At the present time, the DOL is beta-testing the new website, but even this beta-test sends an important message to employers. The DOL is using technology to enable employees to be more proactive in identifying potential legal violations in their workplace. Employers need to be aware of this new tool and be prepared for a potential increase in claims once employees start using this tool.