“How Safe Are We?” A Conversation with Former Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano, Moderated by Anne Kornblut
Spend an evening learning about the state of our national security from one of the foremost experts in the field. Former Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano will be speaking about her experiences with domestic security, our current state of affairs, and what she sees as the road map for the future. Drawing on her personal experiences, as well as her new book, HOW SAFE ARE WE,? Ms. Napolitano will shed light on how safe we truly are and what we can do to protect ourselves in an ever-changing world. It has been nearly two decades since the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. In the years since that terrible day, the US has changed in fundamental ways: how we protect our borders, how we ward off foreign and domestic attacks within those borders, how we travel, how we respond to natural disasters and climate change, and, ultimately, how we conduct our politics. As the first US Secretary of Homeland Security during the Obama administration and the third in the department's history, Janet Napolitano shows in "HOW SAFE ARE WE?: Homeland Security Since 9/11" what we have accomplished since that awful day, where the critical security gaps remain, and where dangerous new ones have opened—and how to close them. In doing so, she argues that political blind spots abound. The book is peppered with stories from Napolitano's career—from her time as two-term governor of Arizona to her service in the Obama administration—with reflections on what it means to have a calling in public service, as well as the importance of changing expectations about whether women are "tough enough" to protect the public. "Homeland security is not only the job of the secretary or of the 240,000 professionals who work for the department," says Napolitano, "it is everyone's responsibility." If Americans work together to restore this common purpose, remain vigilant and refuse to live in fear, we can build a safe, secure and resilient way of life for all. Janet Napolitano is a distinguished public servant with a record of leading large, complex organizations at the federal and state levels. She served as secretary of Homeland Security from 2009–2013. Before that, she was the governor of Arizona, previously serving as attorney general of Arizona and before that as US attorney for the District of Arizona. She was the first woman to chair the National Governors Association, and was named one of the nation's top five governors by Time magazine. Since 2013, she has served as the president of the University of California. The evening will be moderated by Anne Elise Kornblut, a Pulitzer Prize-winning American journalist currently serving as Director of Strategic Communications for Facebook. Kornblut previously served as the Deputy National Editor of the Washington Post, overseeing national politics, national security and health/science/environmental coverage. In 2014, she was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Public Service as the lead editor overseeing coverage of Edward Snowden's NSA revelations. Buy your ticket/book bundle in advance and save! Ticket/book bundles will close on June 18. Books will be available for sale at the event for $26 plus tax. Book sales provided by Books Inc. Palo Alto.
New Law for Employers
The full text of the FFCRA can be found here.
The FFCRA is a new federal law that requires employers with fewer than 500 employees to provide two new paid leave benefits for eligible employees affected by the COVID-19 virus in 2020. This applies only to those employees (not already laid off) who are home sick. The leave requirements generally provide paid sick time or paid leave under certain circumstances (as described more fully in the notice poster, link #4, below). The FFCRA also provides tax credits that may help employers provide the paid leave benefits.
The FFCRA helps the U.S. combat workplace effects of COVID-19 by reimbursing American private employers that have fewer than 500 employees with tax credits for the cost of providing employees with paid leave, taken for specified reasons related to COVID-19. The law enables employers to keep workers (who are home sick with COVID-19 related illness and therefore unable to work, even remotely) on their payrolls, while at the same time ensuring that workers are not forced to choose between their paychecks and the public health measures needed to combat the virus. The Departmnt's Wage and Hour Division administers the paid leave portions of the FFCRA.
If an employer has fewer than 50 employees and providing the paid leave benefits would jeopardize the viability of the business as a going concern, the small business exemption may apply. Employers who believe they qualify for the exemption should document why the business meets the exemption criteria unless and until the Department of Labor issues additional guidance on claiming the exemption.
Effective April 1, 2020, employers are required to properly notify their employees of the new FFCRA leave benefits and implement the requirements.
Below are links to important resources that contain compliant employee notices, guidance, and recommendations for employers subject to the FFCRA.
- Department of Labor: COVID-19 and the American Workplace
- Fact Sheet: FFCRA – Employee Paid Leave Rights (in English)
- Fact Sheet: FFCRA – Employer Paid Leave Requirements (in English)
- Compliant FFCRA notice poster for private-sector employees (in English)
- Department of Labor FAQ for the FFCRA employee notice poster
courtesy of Montgomery & Hansen, LLP