There are times whenfeels compelled to treat some employees differently than others. That’s fine—as long as you can explain why and your explanation makes it clear that race, age, sex or some other protected characteristic wasn’t the reason.
Recent case: Frederick Livingston, who is black, is a police officer. Following allegations that he sexually abused one of his daughters, he was charged with rape, statutory sexual assault, incest, endangering the welfare of minors and other charges. While the case was working its way through the criminal justice system, the police department suspended Livingston.
A jury acquitted Livingston of all charges against him. Within days, he was reinstated to his job and received full back pay.
However, while he was suspended, several programs he had been responsible for were either eliminated or reassigned to others. Livingston was then assigned to programs he considered less prestigious, such as preparing drunken-driving prosecutions and working on abandoned-vehicle cases.
Livingston filed an EEOC complaint, alleging he was being discriminated against because of his race and had to work in a hostile work environment. Essentially, he argued that no one treated him the same after his acquittal as they had before his arrest.
But the court ruled Livingston didn’t show that race had anything to do with his treatment. Namely, he could point to no other nonblack officer who had been acquitted of similarly serious charges who had been treated more favorably after returning to work. The court said the real reason for the difference in pre-arrest and post-acquittal treatment might have been the nature of the charges—but that wasn’t based on race. (Livingston v. Borough of Edgewood, No. 10-4455, 3rd Cir., 2011)
Like what you've read? ...Republish it and share great business tips!
Attention: Readers, Publishers, Editors, Bloggers, Media, Webmasters and more...
We believe great content should be read and passed around. After all, knowledge IS power. And good business can become great with the right information at their fingertips. If you'd like to share any of the insightful articles on BusinessManagementDaily.com, you may republish or syndicate it without charge.
The only thing we ask is that you keep the article exactly as it was written and formatted. You also need to include an attribution statement and link to the article.
" This information is proudly provided by Business Management Daily.com: http://www.businessmanagementdaily.com/14148/better-be-prepared-to-justify-unequal-treatment "
- EEOC issues guidance for helping victims of domestic violence
- Beat bias charges by documenting specific reasons for the discipline you choose
- Legal risks of interviewing transgender applicants
- Set clear job requirements to stop bias claims
- Ready to fire worker with poor attitude? Document examples before you deliver pink slip