Corra Daily Planet » 2012 » June

Massachusetts Adjust Court Hours for Summer Months

Thu, June 28th, 2012 - 1:38 pm - By Gordon Basichis

No Comments »

It’s no secret many states are hurting for money and facing budgetary difficulties.   Many states have issues furloughs where works in different state departments will not being working the full work week and will have days off instead.

For those conducting country criminal records searches and county civil background checks for employment screening purposes, please take note of the modified hours the Massachusetts’ courts will be open during the summer months.


District Court

? Attleboro, Barnstable, E. Brookfield, Fall River (telephones only), Haverhill , Lawrence,

Newburyport/Ipswich (telephones only), Malden, Palmer, Salem, Stoughton, Taunton, Waltham,

Westborough, Woburn, and Wrentham (civil open Thursday)

o Counter and phone coverage restricted 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. Monday through Friday

? Concord

o Counter and phone coverage restricted 1:00 to 2:00 p.m. Monday through Friday

? Dedham

o Counter and phone coverage restricted 1:30 to 3:00 p.m. Monday through Friday

? Framingham/Natick

o Counter and phone coverage restricted 1:00 to 2:00 p.m. Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday

? Somerville, Springfield, Uxbridge

o Counter and phone coverage restricted 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. Monday, Wednesday & Friday

? Lynn

o Counter and phone coverage restricted 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. Monday and Wednesday

? Lowell

o Counter and phone coverage restricted 3:00 to 4:30 p.m. Monday and Wednesday

? Marlborough

o Counter and phone coverage restricted 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. Monday and Wednesday

? Quincy

o Daily after 2 p.m. private applications for criminal complaints and requests for copies of court files will be

deferred until the following business day.

>>In all divisions court sessions still begin at 9:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m.  Restricted access applies to any court

business except:  Persons seeking emergency restraining orders, harassment prevention orders,

mental health emergencies, warrants

Housing Court

? Western Division

o Counter and phone coverage restricted 12 Noon to 2:00 p.m. Monday through Friday

Scheduled matters will continue to be heard throughout the day.

o Satellite sessions cancelled the first week of each month in Northampton, Pittsfield and Greenfield.

Emergency matters during this week will be handled in Springfield. These satellite sessions will continue

the other weeks of the month.

? Southeastern Division — Effective 7/2/12

o Rotation of clerks office closures among five permanent locations in the division

o Schedule attached; court business can be conducted at any location

Juvenile Court

? Springfield Session of the Hampden County Division

o Counter and phone coverage restricted 8:30 to 9:00 a.m. and 4:00 to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Land Court

o Counter and phone coverage restricted 8:30 to 10:00 a.m. Monday through Friday

Court sessions will be held as scheduled throughout the day.

Probate and Family Court

? Following Counties: Barnstable, Bristol, Dukes, Nantucket, Essex, Hampshire, Middlesex, Norfolk, and


o Registry counter and phone coverage restricted after 3 p.m. Monday through Friday

Applies to any court business, except emergency restraining orders and other emergencies.

Court sessions still will begin at 8:30 a.m.  Except in Lawrence, the Registry will close from 1-2 p.m. and

remain open after 2 p.m.             As of 7/2/12


Some Things for Employers to Follow When Conducting Social Media Searches

Wed, June 27th, 2012 - 1:22 pm - By Gordon Basichis

1 Comment »

Many employers are conducting social media background checks.  As these background searches are relatively new for employment screening purposes, certain employers are unwittingly violating the rights of their employment candidates.  A good many are requesting applicant passwords, a no-no, and are marking as negatives questionable areas of privacy.

Now social media background checks can reveal quite a bit about a candidate’s personality and behavior patterns.  It can help determine if he is a good fit for a certain workplace environment.  But then social media searches can produce overkill and in the course of it cause the rejection of candidates for certain idiosyncrasies that would not impede the performance of the job.  The more eccentric types with otherwise impeccable skill sets can be moved aside for a lesser candidate who happens to be more plain vanilla and better behaved.

I have written about social media searches before.  One such article is entitled,  Social Media Background Checks Revisited.

Now Michael Nader in an article on ERE.Net offers some good tips for employers when conducting social media searches.  I will just post a couple of them here.  The rest you can find at this link at ERE.Net.

  1. Search only public content about the candidate on the Internet: The company should only include a review of social media content that is in the public domain on the Internet. Companies should not require candidates to produce their Facebook username or password, or require them to “friend” the company, or require them to log onto their Facebook site and allow the company to “shoulder surf” through their site during an interview. Moreover, a great source for candidates may be internal referrals from current employees. If the referring employee is a “friend” of the candidate on Facebook, do not make a “backdoor” attempt to review the candidate’s non-public content through the referring employee’s “friend” status with the candidate. Always respect the candidate’s privacy settings that cover their online content.
  2. Separate the social media researcher from the decision-maker. A designated company researcher should review public content on social sites to scrub comments about protected categories and activities about candidates before providing it to the decision-maker.



Study Shows Risk of Workplace Violence on Federal Sites

Fri, June 22nd, 2012 - 5:42 am - By Gordon Basichis

1 Comment »

Workplace violence is pervasive.  It can happen anywhere for dozens of reasons.   Intruders or thieves can resort to workplace violence.  A spurned lover or significant other may invade the workplace and inflict harm on his lover or others that try to protect her.

And then workplace violence comes from within. Disgruntled workers can inflict workplace violence for any number of motives, from being fired from the job to believing they were discriminated upon or being bullied.  Or in some cases they were just plain nuts or suffering from substance abuse.  They may be having domestic issues or financial problems, unrelated to the job itself that sets them off.

I have written about workplace violence on numerous occasions.  One such article is, When Workplace Violence Reaches Critical Mass.

According to a recent article in the Washington Post, the United States Merit Systems Protection Board conducted a study on the likelihood of workplace violence in government facilities.

According to the MSPB….it said that its initial findings show that the risk of violence is not limited to organizations with such characteristics. “These groups are certainly at risk, but all federal organizations can be affected by workplace violence since one of the most common perpetrators of violence in the federal workplace are federal employees.

“Our initial findings also indicate that, although most federal employees believe their agencies take sufficient steps to ensure their safety from violence in the workplace, agencies may need to give more attention to preventing violence perpetrated by employees,” MSPB added.

Workplace Violence in a Kansas Radio Station

Tue, June 19th, 2012 - 5:22 am - By Gordon Basichis

No Comments »

When we think of workplace violence we tend to think of being harmed by a fellow employee.   That is the first impulse and a natural one at that.    If you read headline or hear about an incident, first impression is that  someone went nuts on the job and hurt co-worker.  Or it was a case of  harrassment or verbal or psychological abuse.

But workplace violence can occur from without.  External forces, non-employees can intrude upon the workplace and cause harm.  Very often it is the significant other of a worker who sees fit to invade his partner’s workplace and wreak havoc on his allegedly beloved and perhaps some other workers in a package deal.   Women are most often the victims in these case.

But then there are the types of job where workers are vulnerable to violence from external intruders.   Workers can be robbed or beaten , killed in the extreme circumstances.   There may be a motive behind the violence, such as a robbery, or there may be no motive at all.   Just some crazy loon snapped out and decided to hurt somebody.

According the an article from Associated Press, a 48-year-old homeless man is in jail this week after breaking into a Topeka, Kan., television station and stabbing two employees. The incident began after the man, came to the station and talked to the news director about what he saw as his mistreatment at the hands of the Department of Veterans Affairs. The man was told to leave by the news director but returned 10 minutes later, smashing the station’s glass doors with a lamp, and then running through the station wielding a knife and injuring two sales workers. The suspect was eventually tackled and subdued by several employees. Police took the man and the two wounded employees, neither of whom were seriously hurt, to the hospital, before booking the assailant on aggravated battery and other charges.

Bottom line, in this world of ours, you just never know.

Next Page »