Personnel records contain information that’s prime material in any employment discrimination lawsuit. An employee who alleges discrimination is entitled to see how she compares with other similarly situated employees, and can do that by reviewing relevant personnel files.
Recent case: Dania Hall sued after she was denied tenure as a music teacher. She claimed the real reason was her age or sex, and not her qualifications.
One of the first things her attorneys did after filing suit was to demand a copy of the personnel file of every music teacher who had been granted tenure. They told the court they needed the information to prove their case.
The court directed the school to turn over all personnel files of music teachers who had the same supervisor as Hall while she worked in the school district. (Hall v. North Bellmore, No. 08-1999, ED NY, 2011)