Tennessee Employer
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TN Department of Labor and Workforce Development - June 2013

Proof of legal workforce now required of most all employers
E-Verify is one of two methods allowed to verify authorization to legally work

E-VerifyBeginning January 1, 2013, all employers with six or more employees in Tennessee must comply with the Tennessee lawful Employment Act. The intent of this Act is to have a lawful workforce.

The legislation requires employers to enroll and verify employment eligibility of all newly hired employees either through the E-Verify program or by providing specific identity and employment authorization documents.

E-verify is an Internet-based system that allows businesses to determine the eligibility of their employees to work in the United States. It is fast, free, and easy to use. E-Verify compares information from an employee’s Form I-9 (Employment Eligibility Verification) to data from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the Social Security Administration records t confirm employment eligibility.

See the department’s Web site at http://www.tn.gov/labor-wfd/eVerify/index.shtml for FAQs and details on an employer’s responsibility for complying with the Act.

Give a Tennessee veteran a job
Mid South Machine takes advantage of strong candidates

MidSouth MachineDid you know that the department’s Veterans’ Services program can help employers pre screen job applicants? Our local veteran’s staff specializes in matching employer needs with veterans making the transition from military to civilian work. This service was very helpful for Mid-South Machine Human Resources Director Ronnie Wilson.

Howard Duke
Howard Duke

Ronnie Wilson found a new employee through his local Veterans’ Representative Jimmie Simpson based at the Tennessee Career Center at Cookeville. After receiving an e-mail from Simpson about veteran Howard Duke who had some machinist skills, Wilson setup an interview and hired Duke shortly after.

“Jimmie Simpson knows what kind of employee I’m looking for and I guess he does some pre screening for me and saves me time of not having to place ads in the newspaper,” said Ronnie Wilson, Human Resources Director for Mid-South Machine. “I like hiring veterans because most of them have a good work ethic, dependable, and so far we have had a very good fortune with hiring veterans.”

Employers who would like more information on hiring a veteran, call your local Tennessee Career Center and ask for the local veterans' representative. Also for more information about Mid-South Machine visit www.msmachine.com.




2013 Due Dates for Premium and Wage Reports

2nd Quarter
ends June 30, 2013
Reports due July 31, 2013

3rd Quarter ends September 30, 2013
Reports due October 31, 2013

4th Quarter ends December 31, 2013
Reports due January 31, 2014


Reminder_ TN's taxable wage base is $9,000

Effective January 1, 2009, the taxable wage base increased from $7,000 to $9,000. TN employers are responsible for paying unemployment insurance premiums on the first $9,000 paid to each covered employee in a calendar year. Please be certain your taxable wage calculation is correct as to avoid the necessity of correcting your quarterly premium report.


Changes ahead for TN Drug-Free Workplace Program

The Workers’ Compensation Division is working on changes designed to increase the value of the Tennessee Drug-Free Workplace Program (TNDFWP) to employers.

The TNDFWP is publishing a quarterly newsletter to be distributed to all employers who participate in the program.

Drug Free Workplace Newsletter (Volume 1)
General Information Page for the Drug Free Workplace

Also, a contact list of program participants will be made available to them to foster peer-to-peer discussions about drug-free workplace issues. Additionally, the division will hold meetings with business groups to listen to ideas they may have about how the program could be improved for them. Once those meetings are completed, the division expects to implement changes that are appropriate.

The TNDFWP is developing educational materials to assist program participants in the implementation and maintenance of effective drug-free workplace programs. The goal of the changes is to reduce the incidence of drug and alcohol use in the workplace which will reduce the number of job-related injuries.

Injuries and Illness Report
State’s fatal occupational injuries decreased 13 percent in 2011 from 2010

Each year the Department of Labor releases detailed information compiled on all work-related fatalities occurring in Tennessee in the Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries account. The Census includes fatal occupational injuries that occur to self-employed persons, to those engaged in farm operations, to people in traffic accidents in which the person was in work status, to people in incidents at their work facility, and to government employees. Fatalities that occur during a person’s commute to or from work are excluded from the Census.

Interesting findings of the report are as follows:

  • During 2011 there were 120 fatal occupational injuries in Tennessee, down from 138 in 2010
    • Men accounted for 107 fatalities; women 13
    • Of the 120 fatalities, 100 were white, non-Hispanic
  • Thirty-three percent of the fatal occupational injuries were the result of a transportation incident
    • Violence  and other injuries by persons or animals made up 22 percent of fatal injuries
    • May was the month with the most injuries, at 15; February the least, with five
  • Tennessee was one of 25 states and the District of Columbia that had fewer fatal workplace injuries in 2011 compared to 2012

For more information on work fatalities in Tennessee, e-mail Kenneth.Wolentarski@tn.gov, call (615) 741-1749, (800) 778-3966, or access the Web site at http://tennessee.gov/labor-wfd/rslabor.html.


Tips to reduce workplace violence
Late-night retailers should take precautions

Workplace violence has become a hazard for employees in many industries, particularly the late-night retail, health care, and social services industries. TOSHA (Tennessee Occupational Health and Safety Agency) initiates an inspection when there is a complaint, referral, fatality and/or catastrophe (hospitalization of three or more employees) event involving workplace violence in TOSHA-identified susceptible industries.

The late-night retail industry is the focus in this article. Late-night retail employers should evaluate their establishments and determine if precautions against workplace violence are necessary and, if so, should establish a workplace violence program. To view the full TOSHA directive for investigating or inspecting workplace violence incidents click this link:
TOSHA Workplace Violence Prevention Guide Link

How to reduce workplace violence in the retail industry:

  • Limit window signs to low or high locations
  • Ensure that customer service and cash registers are visible from outside
  • Place curved mirrors at hallway intersections and concealed areas
  • Maintain adequate lighting inside and outside facility
  • Install video surveillance equipment
  • Use door detectors so workers are alerted when someone enters the store
  • Have height markers on exit doors to help witnesses provide more accurate descriptions of assailants
  • Install and maintain alarm systems and security devices
  • Install physical barriers between customers and workers, e.g., bullet-resistant enclosures
  • Use drop safes to limit availability of cash to cashiers and post signs stating cashiers have limited cash
  • Use a panic button or other system that can be used to call for back up
  • Arrange for a reliable response system when an alarm is triggered


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Send us comments or suggestions on department topics to jeff.hentschel@tn.gov

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