Employment & Labor Insider

Employment & Labor Insider

Legalese is not spoken here

Category Archives: Discrimination

Subscribe to Discrimination RSS Feed

Another employer pays for “Sorry, I can’t go”

Posted in Americans with Disabilities Act, Discrimination, Drug Testing, Transportation Industry
Last October, I posted about a consent decree entered into between Wal-Mart and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, in which Wal-Mart agreed to pay $72,500 to candidate for a store job in Maryland whose offer was withdrawn because she couldn’t undergo a urine test for drugs. The candidate had end-stage renal disease. Now, Kmart has … Continue Reading

What do employees want? A warm and fuzzy post

Posted in Corporate Culture, Discrimination, Work-Life Balance
Do nice guys really finish first? Yesterday morning, I tweeted a thought-provoking article by Travis Bradberry in Forbes on “Why Your Boss Lacks Emotional Intelligence.” According to the article (and no big surprise), a study found that people in higher management and executive level positions have less emotional intelligence than lower-level managers because in those upper-level … Continue Reading

15 for ’15: Employment and labor resolutions for the new year

Posted in Affirmative Action, Affordable Care Act, Alternative Dispute Resolution, Americans with Disabilities Act, Background Checks, Discrimination, Drug Testing, Equal Pay, ERISA, Family and Medical Leave Act, Harassment, Independent Contractor, Labor Relations, Lactation, Pregnancy, Protected Concerted Activity, Safety, Social media, Wage-Hour
By David Phippen of our Metro D.C. Office. While the year is still young, here are 15 New Year’s resolutions that employers may want to make: 1. Make sure your “independent contractors” are really independent contractors. ”Independent contractors” are under scrutiny by the Internal Revenue Service, the U.S. Department of Labor, the National Labor Relations Board, state … Continue Reading

Year-end employment law roundup — happy 2015!

Posted in Americans with Disabilities Act, Class actions, Discrimination, eLaw, Family and Medical Leave Act, Harassment, Labor Relations, Retaliation, Wage-Hour
NOTE: On January 15, this post was updated and one correction made (see “Nipped in the bud” and “Jury clobbers Catholic diocese,” below).  Happy New Year, everyone! While I’ve been out for the holidays, the courts and government agencies have stayed busy with employment law matters. Here are the developments that I thought were especially … Continue Reading

Christmas won’t be merry for these employers!

Posted in Affordable Care Act, Americans with Disabilities Act, Discrimination, Employment Law Blog Carnival, Harassment, Labor Relations, Lactation, Pregnancy, Wage-Hour
Oh, you better watch out! A lot of employers have been naughty. I checked the court dockets, and would you believe all of these employment lawsuits filed in the week before Christmas!  Cratchit v. Scrooge & Marley (Madison Co. (London) OH Ct. of Common Pleas). Plaintiff asserts claims against employer under Americans with Disabilities Act, contending he … Continue Reading

Employment law advice you should never follow

Posted in Affordable Care Act, Americans with Disabilities Act, Discrimination, Family and Medical Leave Act, Pregnancy, Retaliation, Safety, Violence
Employers, if you’re getting advice like this from your employment lawyer, do you know what time it is? Time to get a new employment lawyer. “Never give in on unemployment.” This is terrible advice on so many levels. First, an employee who doesn’t have even the relatively minimal income provided by unemployment is going to … Continue Reading

Planning your workplace holiday party? Read this first!

Posted in Discrimination, Harassment, Safety, Sexual Torts, Uncategorized, Violence, Wage-Hour
Yeah, yeah – I know it isn’t even Thanksgiving yet, but you are planning your holiday party now, and you want answers to your burning questions while you still have time to do something about it. And, as luck would have it, I presented a webinar on Wednesday with David Weisenfeld of XpertHR on “How … Continue Reading

LGBT charges are rolling in, EEOC Commissioner says

Posted in Discrimination, Gender Identity Discrimination
Chai Feldblum, a Commissioner of the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, recently presented an update on the EEOC’s handling of charges alleging sexual orientation and gender identity discrimination. At the meeting, reported this week in Bloomberg BNA, Commissioner Feldblum said that the EEOC is now tracking the intake and resolution of these charges, which I’ll … Continue Reading

Halloween in the workplace? Bah! Humbug!

Posted in Discrimination, Harassment
When it comes to Halloween in the workplace, just call me Scrooge. A reader writes, Hi, Robin. I dread the prospect of employees coming to work in inappropriate Halloween costumes. I’ve seen costumes that are sexually provocative, or that reflect racial or ethnic stereotypes. Some people even say that employers shouldn’t have Halloween parties because … Continue Reading

Eggs in the workplace

Posted in Discrimination, Pregnancy
No, not that kind of egg. This kind of egg:   Eggs – human eggs, aka ova – have been in the news this week. First, it was announced that Facebook and Apple will begin offering insurance coverage for female employees to freeze their eggs for later fertilization and implantation, a procedure that can cost as … Continue Reading

A reader asks: “Is it me, or has job interviewing become really complicated?”

Posted in Americans with Disabilities Act, Discrimination, Pregnancy
Last week, I wrote about the two situations in which an employer should ask an applicant about a disability or a religious belief or practice that might require reasonable accommodation. (As I emphasized last week, 99 percent of the time, you should stay away from these topics in job interviews.) My post prompted one reader … Continue Reading

An employer should never ask about disability or religion. Except when it should.

Posted in Americans with Disabilities Act, Discrimination
Everybody knows that an employer should never, ever, ever ask an applicant about religion or disability until after a conditional offer of employment has been made. And maybe not even then. Right? Right? Well, mostly right. But, as a couple of EEOC lawsuits show, there may be times when you have to make an exception … Continue Reading

The EEOC has been a busy bee this week. (It stings!)

Posted in Americans with Disabilities Act, Class actions, Discrimination, Employment Law Blog Carnival, Genetic Information Non-Discrimination Act, GINA, Harassment, Pregnancy, Settlements
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has been on a tear this week, suing employers right and left, and getting some “wins” including a couple of big settlements . . . Train-wreck boss. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit (Louisiana, Mississippi, and Texas) vacated a summary judgment decision for a Tex-Mex restaurant franchisor … Continue Reading

Yes, employers, you can win a transgender discrimination suit

Posted in Discrimination, Gender Identity Discrimination
A recent decision from a federal court in Georgia provides an excellent illustration about how employers can win summary judgment (dismissal before a jury trial) even in cases as sensitive as those alleging discrimination based on gender identity. Plaintiff Jennifer Chavez was hired as a mechanic by Credit Nation Auto Sales in Austell, Georgia (a … Continue Reading

Employers, don’t commit these 5 firing faux pas!

Posted in Americans with Disabilities Act, Discrimination, Employment at Will, Family and Medical Leave Act, Pregnancy
Do you think you have that employee termination all buttoned up, and no one will be able to challenge you? Defending that EEOC charge will be a slam dunk? No plaintiff’s lawyer in his right mind would represent your soon-to-be-ex employee? Are you sure about that? Can we talk? Don’t commit these five firing faux … Continue Reading

Sexy ADA issue: Bad breakup may not justify employer-mandated medical exam

Posted in Americans with Disabilities Act, Discrimination, Employment Law Blog Carnival, Off-Duty Conduct
Rarely does one get a case that involves a cutting-edge Americans with Disabilities Act issue combined with wild, crazy, passionate, irrationally exuberant, tempestuous, adulterous romance. Well, folks, today is your lucky day. Should we start with the sex, or with the ADA issue? Oh, heck – let’s start with the sex. Emily Kroll, an Emergency … Continue Reading

BREAKING: OFCCP issues directive on gender-identity discrimination

Posted in Affirmative Action, Discrimination
The Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs has issued a new directive on gender-identity discrimination, consistent with President Obama’s recent amendment to Executive Order 11246. In essence, the directive says that discrimination based on gender identity is a form of sex discrimination prohibited by Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, a position … Continue Reading

Sex stereotyping, sexual orientation discrimination, and federal law – crazy-mixed-up right now

Posted in Discrimination, ENDA, Harassment
The Employment Non-Discrimination Act is dead again. Is there any federal law on same-sex harassment or discrimination? If so, what is it? Here are some scenarios that may be helpful in picking through this crazy extremely complex and rapidly transitioning area of the law. (Answers are provided after Scenario 6, below.) The American Bar Association … Continue Reading

An in-depth look at the EEOC’s new Enforcement Guidance on pregnancy

Posted in Affordable Care Act, Americans with Disabilities Act, Discrimination, Lactation, Pregnancy
As promised on Monday, here is my magnum opus regarding the EEOC’s new Enforcement Guidance on Pregnancy Discrimination and Related Issues. (Next week, I’ll try to get back to spurious sexual harassment lawsuits against Yahoo executives and gift cards to employees who don’t go to the bathroom during the work day . . . all … Continue Reading