Live: 2020 HR Employment Law Outlook: 2019 Set the Stage for a Very Busy 2020

Live Webinar + Download
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Time:1 pm eastern
Run Time: 90 minutes including Q & A session
Leaders: Catherine Mattice-Zundel, SPHR, SHRM-SCP & Jenna H. Leyton-Jones, Attorney at Law
Credits: Awarded 1.5 credit hours by HRCI
Price: Webinar $295; Webinar + Download $349 (Share the download with your colleagues)
Audience: HR, benefits, finance, managers and supervisors, CEOs, in-house counsel, etc.


Stress, anxiety, fear, and a feeling of being out of control and vulnerable are all examples of the types of issues many of your employees will be exhibiting as they return to your workplace during the continuing COVID-19 pandemic. After all, their familiar workplace is gone, and it is uncertain what has replaced it and how they will function within it.

Some workers will have minimal fears and anxieties. Others will be good at disguising their fears and anxieties. Still others will be openly anxious and may have already requested what was supposed to be a temporary work from home arrangement to become permanent. Others are coming back to the workplace reluctantly and will be second guessing every action you take to keep the workplace safe. Rumors will be widespread, increasing the anxiety levels of a workforce that is already on “pins and needles.”

Compound all that anxiety and fear with what comes with the social injustices highlighted in recent months. Every day your workforce comes to work with that on their minds, and, people of color are feeling strong emotions they cannot share with their peers. Compound that with what’s no doubt going to be an emotionally charged presidential election, and all of us are bound to crack!

Getting your company back up to speed from COVID, working towards inclusivity, and managing the political climate while simultaneously considering the mental health and psychological well-being of your employees is paramount. You must successfully manage your workforce’s needs and offer practical solutions because stress creates problems—increased aggression and bullying, decreased physical health and stamina, and the consequences those issues bring to your organization such as reduced productivity and customer service. In addition, don’t forget about the ADA, FMLA, Rehabilitation Act of 1973, GINA and other federal, state, and local requirements that come into play.

It’s important for you to lay out a plan for addressing this potentially explosive situation, and the ADA interactive process offers some guidance for how to discuss a mental health issue with an employee. Your employees will need your understanding and are looking to you for answers to their near and longer term COVID-19-related mental health issues.

Please join Catherine Mattice Zundel, CEO of Civility Partners, Inc, and an HR expert in building positive workplaces, as she describes the symptoms of a struggling workforce, what to lookout for, and practical solutions for mitigating stress. In addition, Jenna Leyton-Jones of Leyton-Jones Law will discuss the regulatory framework you’ll be operating in as you work to identify and resolve the COVID-19 mental health issues your employees are dealing with now and likely for many months to come.


During this important program, our speakers will answer the following questions:

  • What are the signs and consequences of workplace stress and anxiety?
  • How HR can assist an anxious employee? Can you approach an employee you suspect is suffering or do you have to wait for the employee to come to you?
  • What do the ADA, the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, GINA, and other federal, state, and local requirements allow and require you to do?
  • What are some company-wide programs to reduce employee anxieties, such as employee counseling, regular group meetings, and encouraging employee feedback?
  • Will PPE and social distancing reduce the fears employees already have? Do your employees think PPE and social distancing will work? What if an employee refuses to use PPE and social distance?
  • What do you do if an employee becomes ill with COVID-19, and how do you control the rumors and gossip that come with it?
  • What alternative accommodations are available in the workplace? What additional considerations are there for those with already documented disabilities?
  • How do you effectively use the ADA interactive process to find solutions which work for both the company and the employee when it comes to COVID-19?
  • How do you refuse a work from home accommodation request and not run the risk of the employee claiming that they are a victim of discrimination?
  • Can an employee refuse a work assignment citing health conditions? Can you discipline an employee for their refusal? Can the employee claim that they are the victim of discrimination?
  • How do you encourage workers to come forward with their concerns, and train managers and supervisors to recognize the obvious signs of worker anxiety and stress?
  • Is disciplinary action during COVID-19 insensitive? What should you do with a non or low-performing employee?


Catherine Mattice-Zundel, SPHR, SHRM-SCP is the founder and CEO of Civility Partners. Catherine founded Civility Partners in 2008 because of working in a toxic environment and has since served a huge array of clients with consulting, training, and coaching services. The firm is dedicated to reducing the pain and uncertainty thousands of people feel each day they are at work. Catherine has written three books, one of which Ken Blanchard called, “the most comprehensive and valuable handbook on the topic” of workplace bullying. Catherine has also been cited in such media outlets as, Inc Magazine, Entrepreneur, and USA Today, and appeared as a guest on such venues as NPR and CNN. She is active in the International Association for Workplace Bullying & Harassment (IAWBH) and one of the four founding members of the National Workplace Bullying Coalition, a nonprofit organization focused on ending workplace bullying. She has a bachelor’s and master’s in communication, and taught communication courses at the college level for ten years.

Jenna H. Leyton-Jones is an experienced employment law attorney and trusted business advisor who helps companies in all industries grow their bottom lines. Through employment counseling, training, and impartial workplace investigations, she provides employers with the tools and information they need to create a thriving workforce and achieve their business goals. She is the founder of Leyton Law, APC. Prior to founding her own firm, Jenna was a partner at another Southern California law firm, where she spent over a decade providing employment law advice and litigation defense to large and small companies throughout California. She is a sought-after speaker on various human resources-related compliance and risk management issues. Jenna has been awarded an “AV Preeminent” rating by Martindale Hubbell for achieving the highest level of professional excellence based on her legal knowledge, communication skills and ethical standards. She has also been selected for inclusion on the Super Lawyers Rising Stars, San Diego Business Journal’s “Best of the Bar,” and San Diego Magazine’s “Top Lawyers” lists. Jenna earned her J.D. from the University of San Diego School of Law where she graduated cum laude.

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