Beware Sec. 1981 lawsuits, which target race bias — Business Management Daily: Free Reports on Human Resources, Employment Law, Office Management, Office Communication, Office Technology and Small Business Tax Business Management Daily

Beware Sec. 1981 lawsuits, which target race bias

by on
in Discrimination and Harassment,Human Resources

After the end of the Civil War, Con­­gress enacted Section 1981, outlawing bias based on race in contracts.

But “race” is a general term that also includes clas­­sifications based on qualities like being identified as Ger­­man, Russian or Arab.

Recent case: Shu-Lien Chang sued the restaurant where she worked, alleging that she was har­assed be­­cause of her Asian race. She based her suit on Section 1981. Her employer argued that the law didn’t cover national-origin discrimination.

The court agreed, but said that her identification as a member of the Asian race was different. It said that ethnic­ity and characteristics common to people from particular countries can be “race” for lawsuit purposes. (Chang v. Sodexho, No. 5:11-CV-935, ND OH, 2011)

Leave a Comment