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2012 Employment Law and Legislative Conference

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SHRM and its members flexed their advocacy muscle last week during the 2012 Employment Law & Legislative Conference. However, prior to over 200 SHRM members visiting the offices of their representatives and senators on March 7, a half-dozen members of Congress made their way to the conference to share their perspectives with SHRM attendees on a plethora of issues – ranging from employer-provided educational assistance, health care reform, the government’s role in today’s workplaces and the monumental challenges confronting the country involving the debt, national security and the lack of ‘compromise’ on Capitol Hill.

On Super Tuesday, March 6, SHRM welcomed four – ‘count ‘em, 4’ – members of the U.S. House of Representatives to speak to conferees, two of which serve in the leadership of their respective parties.  Rep. James E. Clyburn (D-SC), the third-ranking Democrat in the House Leadership (pictured above), and Rep. Tim Scott (R-SC), House Deputy Majority Whip (pictured at right), addressed the conference on the failed Super Committee budget negotiations that failed in the fall of 2011, as well as the NLRB’s quick election rule and Boeing decision. Rep. Charles Gonzalez (D-TX), a key member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, and Rep. Todd Platts (R-PA), a key member of the House Education and Workforce Committee, who are both retiring from Congress at the end of this year expressed the hope that both Democrats and Republicans can come together soon to address the multiple challenges confronting the country.  

On March 7, SHRM members enjoyed breakfast in the Kennedy Caucus Room in the Russell Senate Office Building prior to conducting their Hill meetings, and heard remarks from two more members of Congress – Rep. Tim Walberg (R-MI), chairman of the House Workforce Protections Subcommittee (pictured at left), who discussed workplace issues pending before the House and Rep. Allyson Schwartz (D-PA), a member of the House Budget Committee (pictured at right), shared with attendees an insider’s perspective on the health care debate.

These six congressional speakers shared their unique perspectives on a range of HR public policy issues dealing with labor-management relations, health care reform, immigration policy, and presidential/election year-politics. All told, these members provided great diversity of thought, experiences, demeanor and style in their remarks to SHRM members.

It’s not too soon to begin thinking about whether to attend the 2013 SHRM Employment Law & Legislative Conference and join the nation’s leading policymakers in Washington next March. We hope to see you then – if not before!

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