Employees who belong to a protected class often sue for discrimination if they feel they have been denied training and education opportunities.
That’s why you should carefully track what training courses or experiences you offer, the minimum qualifications for each opportunity and who ends up taking advantage of each one. Then check participation against qualifications and protected class to make certain there is no favoritism.
That way, if an employee challenges training decisions, you will be able to show the court that you offered everyone who qualified for training a chance.
Recent case: Omar Osahar, who is black, works for the U.S. Post Office in Florida as an electronics technician. Over his 30-year career, he has filed numerous discrimination complaints. The latest one claimed that white and Hispanic technicians got more opportunities for training.
But was able to show that Osahar had participated in as many training opportunities as other technicians with similar qualifications. Although he had been passed over for several training sessions, management showed that he was denied those opportunities because he had already received those specific types of training earlier. The court dismissed his lawsuit. (Osahar v. Postmaster General, No. 06-15613, 11th Cir., 2007)
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