Labor and employment roundup


  • The EEOC effort to challenge wellness programs seems to conflict with the mandates flowing from the PPACA that encouage insurance companies to gather data and nudge people towards healthier living. I am a retired Fed, and BCBS continually nags me to take a “wellness survey” about my food and exercise habits, smoking, drinking, and illegal drug taking, so that it can counsel me.

    Why isn’t the EEOC going after the program run for Federal workers, which I believe has this as a requirement for the insurance providers?

  • I call BS on Coyote. If the letter said what he says it said it was probably illegal and certainly unethical. Why did he not forward the letter to the IG? Surely he has insurance covering his expenses. At the very least, he should have discussed this with his insurance carrier.

  • Allan,

    Coyote’s company has a very small management footprint. Even if he had insurance coverage for any liability/legal fees, the personal time needed to defend against any potential law suit would itself be a significant cost which business insurance wouldn’t cover.

  • He is acting more like an ostrich than his own moniker. That is his choice. He has no obligation to report anything. However, if asked, he must tell the truth.

  • rxc, it looks like all the programs being challenged involve penalizing employees who do not participate (providing medical information and/or undergoing medical examinations or tests). In one of them, a non-participating employee had to pay his entire medical insurance premium and was financially penalized. The company paid the entire health insurance premium for participating employees. As long as federal employees are being encouraged to participate, but not actually penalized for refusing, I’m not sure there would be any basis for action.

  • Richard: Yeah, I was gonna point that out as well. This is not “employer getting sued because people in wheelchairs can’t take advantage of the free gym”, this is “we charge you an extra thousand dollars a year because your wife smokes”.