When the U.S. Supreme Court opens its new term on Oct. 2, look for a clear theme to the employment-related cases it has chosen to address: the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
Even after more than 40 years, courts continue to interpret that important federal law, which bars discrimination on the basis of race, religion, sex and national origin in hiring, firing, pay and other aspects of employment.
So far, the court has agreed to hear five cases interpreting aspects of the Civil Rights Act.
Two cases concern whether federal employees' discriminatory actions were outside of their "scope of employment," but that ruling only applies to federal employees.
Two other cases deal with affirmative action in high school admissions. Employers may gain some guidance on how far they can go to create a workplace that resembles the racial mix of the surrounding community or within the industry.
Time limits on pay-bias cases
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