Business Partners, SVALA Activities

Workplace Update Breakfast

Are you confused by the ever-changing labor laws? Finding it hard to keep up with overtime regulations? What do employers do to handle the now legal (in California anyway) recreational marijuana use?

The group enjoying breakfast
The group enjoying breakfast

One of the most anticipated events of the year for our members is the Annual Workplace Update Breakfast which answers these and many other questions!

If only there were mimosas to go along with the headache all these changes are causing!

There may not have been mimosas but we did have two knowledgeable attorneys from the Labor and Employment team of Wilke Fleury. Bianca Watts and Samson Elsbernd walked us through unisex restroom signage requirements, amendments to the Fair Pay Act, the status of the Federal Overtime Rule and even what Proposition 64 (Recreational Marijuana Use) means for employers.

Bianca Watts and Samson Elsbernd
Bianca Watts and Samson Elsbernd

Samson spoke to our group in August on the topic of “Simply Sex . . . Sex, Gender, Gender Identity.” He was dynamic and knowledgeable then so it was wonderful to see him back speaking at the breakfast. Bianca and Samson took turns with the various topics and walked us through the 2017 updates. There was also quite a bit of audience participation since these new laws and regulations always generate a lot of questions.

As we learned, the minimum wage is increasing over the next few years which will impact the California minimum wage for exempt employees.

Kellie Narayan and Samson Elsbernd
Kellie Narayan and Samson Elsbernd

They also spoke on a topic that is near and dear to my heart: all-gender restrooms! Yes, I realize that might seem like an odd thing to be passionate about but it is not only an important topic for transgender people but also for caregivers caring for a member of the opposite sex. (I will spare you my embarrassing stories of sneaking into the men’s restroom while caring for my disabled brother!)

Samson told us that by March 1, 2017 all single-user restrooms must be labeled for all-gender. Woohoo! No more red-faced moments for me or uncomfortable situations for transgender persons.

Bianca and Samson covered too many topics to recap here but know that the breakfast was worth the anticipation and is something you will not want to miss next year.

Julie Denker and Kevin Valine of EPIC
Member Julie Denker with Kevin Valine of EPIC

Aside from the excellent speakers, we were able to visit with our wonderful Business Partners. What I love about visiting with our sponsors is their ability to attend events such as this as our peers and not as sales people. While I am sure they would love our business (and many of us are customers of some, if not all, of the sponsors), they are fun to talk with and get to know.

They are not just our Business Partners but have become our friends as well. And I’m not just saying that because I won a prize. 🙂

Past President Penny Stauffer and Debbie Jordan of Sacramento Placement Services
Past President Penny Stauffer with Debbie Jordan of Sacramento Placement Services

Many thanks to our Platinum Sponsors: EPIC, Gallaway Commercial, Pacific Records Management, Sacramento Placement Services, Sierra Office Supplies & Printing and Terrapin Technology Group. (Click on the hyperlink to read the Business Partner Spotlights!)

Many thanks to our Gold Sponsors: CMA Insurance Services, Caltronics, First Legal Network and Fujitani Consulting.

Our Silver Sponsors, FlexManage and Smile Business Products weren’t able to attend but we appreciate them anyway!

Pacific Records Management, Richard Steed and Mike Young with  Nitza Medina-Garcia and Isabel Garcia
Pacific Records Management, Richard Steed and Mike Young with Nitza Medina-Garcia and Isabel Garcia

We also appreciate our Bronze sponsors: ABA Retirement Funds, Ahern Insurance Brokerage, HumanScale and DFS Green!

Finally, I have to say a HUGE thank you to Kellie Narayan, the SVALA Program and Education Chair, who has done a spectacular job this year of lining up interesting topics and speakers. She convinced Samson and Bianca of her firm, Wilke Fleury, to speak at our annual breakfast and I am pretty sure she didn’t even have to bribe them (except maybe with the promise of breakfast).  Kellie has one of the most time-consuming positions on the Board of Directors but has handled her Education duties beautifully!

If you missed the Workplace Update breakfast this year, be sure to look for it again next January. I can’t promise mimosas but I can promise a few hours of education, fun and fabulous prizes!

That’s (almost) better than mimosas any day, right?