January 2020  

President's Report

Happy New Year!!

I am looking forward to serving as WCASHRM President for 2020. THANK YOU to the 2019 WCASHRM Board for all of your hard work and dedication to the chapter. A special THANK YOU goes out to Marina Mueller, VP Membership, for her past years of service.  I am excited to work with the 2020 WCASHRM Board to improve membership and participation. 

Please mark your calendars for the following Programs/ Events of interest for 2020:

January 28th - WCASHRM Monthly Meeting [11:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.]  Where Bruce Cross will give us Legislative/Legal Updates. Meetings are held at CHI St Vincent McCauley Room.

April 1st - April 3rd- ARSHRM HR Conference & Expo - Rogers, AR.

August 27 - Join us for the 17th Annual WCASHRM Managers' Seminar [8 a.m. - 4 p.m.]  At the Hot Springs Convention Center - Hot Springs, AR.

September 24th & 25th - Arkansas SHRM Employment Law & Legislative Affairs (ELLA) Conference Robinson Center - Little Rock, AR.

The Board has decided to continue our monthly drive again this year to benefit local organizations. We have chosen 4 community organizations to focus on. We will accept Bus Pass donations for Veterans at the January, February, March and April meetings, for Steve Ezelle. If you have any suggestions for our monthly drive, please email Lanetta Bryant Harris at [email protected].

We are looking for 2020 meeting sponsors, donations for the SHRM Foundation monthly drawings, and speakers for the monthly meetings. POTENTIAL SPONSORS please email Kelli Burris at [email protected]  SHRM FOUNDATING DRAWING please email Jennifer Tiller at [email protected].  SPEAKERS/ TOPICS please email Shayne King at [email protected].

If you would like to donate a door prize for the ARSHRM Conference, please bring it to the next meeting or email [email protected]

Check out the HONESTHR Podcast at, a podcast from SHRM that gets REAL.

Our next meeting will be at 11:30 a.m. on January 28th, 2020 at CHI St. Vincent Health Center. Lunch will be Brisket, vegetable, salad and dessert.

I look forward to seeing all of you then.

Terry Davis
2020 WCASHRM President

Back to top

Meeting Topic

Legislative/Legal Updates with Bruce Cross

Attorney J. Bruce Cross of Cross, Gunter, Witherspoon & Galchus will present a review of 2019 developments in major areas of labor and employment law including wage and hour, sexual harassment, Marijuana, and activities of the National Labor Relations Board and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. He will also cover legal and legislative developments to expect in 2020.


J. Bruce Cross is a director in the firm of Cross, Gunter, Witherspoon & Galchus, P.C. in Little Rock, Arkansas, who practices in the areas of labor and employment defense law. Bruce is a Fellow in the College of Labor and Employment Lawyers of the American Bar Association. He was also named Lawyer of the Year in Little Rock in Labor Law – Management in 2014 & 2019. Bruce is also listed as a Leading Lawyer in Labor and Employment in Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business; Best Lawyers in America in Labor and Employment Law; US News and World Report Listing of Best Labor and Employment Lawyers ; Who’s Who Legal: Labor & Employment 2018; Mid-South Super Lawyers and the Top 50 Arkansas Mid-South Super Lawyers. Bruce received his undergraduate degree from the University of Notre Dame and his J.D. degree from the University of Arkansas School of Law. Bruce’s practice includes work before the National Labor Relations Board, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the Wage & Hour and OFCCP Divisions of the Department of Labor, as well as related federal and state court litigation.

1 hour SHRM PDCs and HRCI credit is approved.


WCASHRM is recognized by SHRM to offer Professional Development Credits (PDCs) for the SHRM-CP or SHRM-SCP.

The use of this seal confirms that this activity has met HR Certification Institute’s® (HRCI®) criteria for recertification credit pre-approval.

Back to top

Monthly Sponsor

At Hot Springs Health and Fitness, we pride ourselves in being the only full service club in Hot Springs.  We have a complete group fitness menu including basic workout training, various styles of Yoga to suit your lifestyle, Spin classes, AB Boot Camp, Pickleball and dance just to name a few.  We have a certified personal fitness trainers available to assist you in meeting your health and fitness goals.  Our on site Spa includes a hair salon,  massage therapist, and private Pilates studio.  We have outdoor pool, tennis courts, wet and dry sauna, whirlpool and Recovery Zone smoothie bar to replenish your protein after each workout.  We also have tanning beds, scheduled childcare and offer the 30 FIT program.  Also included is our 2030 Fast Track Health and Wellness lifestyle program targeting weight loss and overall health benefits by balancing your hormones.

Back to top

Managers' Seminar

Save the Date! Make plans for you and your managers to attend our 17th Annual Managers Seminar on Thursday, August 27, 2020 at the Hot Springs Convention Center.

If you have any suggested topics, please email [email protected].

Back to top

Membership Corner


It’s renewal time for your WCASHRM Membership. The 2020 application is available HERE.

It’s time to renew your local chapter SHRM membership by completing the 2020 WCASHRM Membership Application. We would like for ALL current members and new members complete a 2020 application and return to [email protected]. If you checkmark or write AUTO RENEWAL on the form, we will renew your membership automatically in future years. If you owe dues or elect any of the packages on the form, we’ll invoice you.


With chapter membership, you get access to our chapter meetings, holiday party, newsletter, free job postings, networking with local HR professionals and more.



As in the past, the board of directors have once again approved to waive the membership dues for those who are National SHRM members AND designate WCASHRM as their primary chapter. This means your chapter dues are FREE! You just have to fill out a chapter membership form.


Our chapter number is 0467. Please make sure to provide the primary email you note with your SHRM membership on your application so that we can verify your National SHRM status. For those of you who are not a member of SHRM or if you are a member of another Arkansas Chapter, your WCASHRM membership dues have not increased. You will still be required to pay membership dues when you renew your WCASHRM application.

The dues in 2020 for the SHRM Professional Membership are $219/year. This includes all benefits listed below plus printed issues of HR Magazine. Here are just a few of the valuable benefits you get with a SHRM Membership…..

  • HR Tools & Resources – templates & samples, legal & compliance resources, the latest HR news, HR solutions (Ask an advisor)
  • Career Resources & Tools – tools to help you accelerate your career
  • Networking opportunities – SHRM Connect and volunteer opportunities
  • Professional Development to help and prepare you for obtaining your certification
  • Research Insights & Solutions – Studies and repots, business solutions
  • Upcoming Events – keeps you informed of upcoming SHRM sponsored events

Questions? Email [email protected].

Back to top

Community Involvement

WCASHRM will hold a Transportation Passes Drive to benefit local veterans during the months of January, February, March and April. Member Steve Ezelle who works with our local veterans through the Arkansas Department of Workforce Services will ensure they benefit from the Chapter’s generous donations. Transportation passes can be purchased (cash or check only - No credit or debit cards accepted) at the Hot Springs Transportation Depot (located at 100 Broadway Terr) or bring a check made payable to the City of Hot Springs or cash to the meeting and we will purchase the passes for you. Monthly bus passes cost $41.25 or Coupon books (10 rides) - $9.25. 

Back to top

Legislative Updates

Christmas Comes Early for Employers Thanks to Multiple Decisions by the NLRB

Purple Communications is Overruled

The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) issued its long-awaited decision on December 17, 2019 in the Caesars Entertainment d/b/a/ Rio All-Suites Hotel and Casino case, effectively restoring employers’ rights to restrict the use of their email systems by employees. In issuing this decision, the NLRB has overruled the Obama-era Purple Communications case where the Board held that employees who have been given access to their employer’s email system for work-related purposes have a presumptive right to use that system, on nonworking time, for communications protected by Section 7 of the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA).

Employers’ rights to have control over the use of their equipment, including email and other IT systems, is now restored. It is a significant win for businesses. Employers may lawfully exercise their right to restrict the use of these systems provided that in doing so, they do not discriminate against union or other protected concerted activities. The Board also recognized that in today’s modern workplace, employees have many other avenues available to them to engage in communications protected by Section 7. The Board’s decision does provide for one exception where circumstances as such that employer-provided email is the only reasonable means for employee communication with one another during non-working time on a workday. These situations should be isolated given the availability of social media platforms. This decision, therefore, further solidifies the pro-employer leaning of the current Board. Employers should review and revise their email and other related IT system policies in light of this decision.   

Confidentiality in Workplace Investigations is Strengthened

In another decision issued by the NLRB, the Board held that work rules requiring confidentiality during the course of workplace investigations are presumptively valid. The holding in Apogee Retail LLC d/b/a Unique Thrift Store has overruled prior precedent from the Banner Estrella case that required an employer to prove, on a case-by-case basis, that the integrity of an investigation would be compromised if it was not kept confidential. In overruling this precedent, the Board concluded that Banner Estrella placed an improper burden on employers to determine whether its interests outweighed those of employees in preserving the integrity of an investigation.

In its decision, the Board applied the Boeing Company test for facially neutral workplace rules. The Board found that investigative confidentiality rules generally fall under the Boeing Category 1 types of rules where, on their face, the rules apply only for the duration of any investigation. Put another way, employers can now lawful enforce confidentially rules for investigations so long as the rule applies to the duration of the investigation.

2019 SHRM A-Team Success

Last month, the Senate voted to pass H.R. 1865, one of two federal government spending packages that includes four key policy items that SHRM has championed. Seven years of staff time, countless meetings, phone calls, texts and posts have resulted in a bill that the President is expected to sign into law tomorrow. We could not have done this the SHRM membership's help.

The spending bill repeals the Cadillac Tax on high-value employer-sponsored health plans, which was scheduled to take effect January 2022. SHRM has been tireless in our efforts for full repeal of this tax. In addition, the bill addresses three other policy priorities that SHRM and our members strongly advocated in favor of this Congress:

  1. The Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement Act (SECURE Act), to make it easier for small employers to set up retirement plans that are less expensive and easier to administer. The SECURE Act would allow unaffiliated employers to offer their employees a 401(k) through a multiple employer plan (MEP), with eased compliance requirements compared to current MEPs. In addition, the bill increases the business tax credit for plan startup costs to make setting up retirement plans more affordable for small businesses. SHRM joined the employer community for the past year in advocating in support of the SECURE Act.
  2. The Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC), a federal tax credit available to employers that hire and retain individuals from certain groups that have consistently faced significant barriers to employment is extended for one year through December 31, 2020. More than 450 SHRM members advocated in support of WOTC during the Volunteer Leaders' Business Meeting Hill Day on November 14.
  3. E-Verify and Other Workplace Immigration Programs, which provide U.S. employers access to global talent are extended through September 30, 2020. The bill's extensions cover the E-Verify, Conrad 30 for foreign medical graduates, the non-minister special immigrant religious worker and EB-5 programs. Of importance, the bill also retains a directive to protect J-1 educational and cultural exchange programs from any modification unless it goes through a formal rulemaking, Congress is consulted, and the modification is publicly reported.  SHRM advocates for a modern workplace immigration system that allows employers to access top global talent while protecting U.S. workers. 

These legislative successes are a direct result of SHRM's commitment to elevating the voice of HR. Thank you for using your voices to maximize our reach.

Back to top


Back to top