SHRM encourages lawmakers to update FLSA to meet changing needs

The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) recently came before the U.S. House Subcommittee on Workforce Protections with an urgent message: Update the 73-year-old Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) to satisfy the demands of today’s workplaces.

According to Nobumichi Hara, an HR executive and SHRM member who testified at the Congressional hearing, “The FLSA reflects the realities of the industrial workplace in the 1930s and not the workplace of the 21st century.”

As senior vice president of human capital for Goodwill of Central Arizona in Phoenix, Hara drew on his own experience to illustrate some of the FLSA limitations he’s encountered with Goodwill employees. Specifically, he expressed concern that the FLSA doesn’t permit employers to provide flexible workplace benefits, such as flextime, telecommuting and compressed workweeks, to millions of nonexempt (or hourly) workers.

In his closing remarks, Hara shared the sentiment of many who testified – that reform of the FLSA would encourage employers to better meet the needs of their employees.

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