The federal job anti-discrimination law (Title VII of the Civil Rights Act) prohibits two types of discrimination:
- Disparate treatment: employer actions that directly discriminate against an employee or applicant based on the person's age, race, gender, religion, national origin or disability status.
- Disparate impact: employer actions that appear to be neutral but have an unequal (or disparate) impact on a "protected" group of employees.
Because automated tests, such as résumé-screening programs, are blind to applicants' race, religion, gender and national origin, they likely can't create a disparate-treatment case.
However, such programs can still have a disparate impact on minorities. Plus, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled last year that people can also file disparate-impact lawsuits in age-discrimination cases. (Smith v. City of Jackson)
The ADA also prohibits employers from conducting medical tests pri...(register to read more)