If an employee requests a transfer, be sure to document that he did so.
Recent case: Clark, who is black, worked as a physician assistant (PA) in a hospital’s surgery department, alongside two white female PAs. The hospital implemented a new policy requiring anyone wanting to remain in the surgery department to accept on-call assignments. Clark requested a transfer to a different department.
Later, a supervisory position opened up, but the hospital only considered candidates who had remained in surgery. Clark sued, alleging discrimination after he learned a former female co-worker had been promoted.
The court tossed out Clark’s lawsuit, reasoning that he had requested the transfer and couldn’t now claim discrimination just because he didn’t like the consequences. (Adams v. Yale New Haven Hospital, No. 12-4279, 2nd Cir., 2014)
- Don't tolerate bully boss--but don't fear bias lawsuit if he's awful to everyone
- Independent investigation doesn't have to be perfect
- OK to discipline worker who has complained, but be sure you can justify your decision
- 3rd Circuit takes dim view when employees appeal decisions in frivolous lawsuits
- Dress, grooming policies should serve bona fide business need