Trucker David Virts refused to work with women during "sleeper runs" because of his religious beliefs. After his first refusal, he was warned. After his second refusal, the company fired him. He sued, citing religious discrimination, but the court tossed out his claim. Reason: Employers don't have to sacrifice the seniority provisions of a collective bargaining agreement to fulfill a worker's accommodation request. (Virts v. Consolidated Freightways Corporation of Delaware, No. 00-5501, 6th Cir., 2002) The best offense in these situations: Tell the employee that the requested accommodation is unreasonable and would result in undue hardship on the company. Then strengthen your case by offering alternative accommodations.
- Women have up to three years to file equal-Pay lawsuits under the EPA
- $16M suit could require lots of cuts for trendy NYC salon
- Stick to the facts when firing employee who complained of discrimination
- The practice judges never forgive: Retaliation
- Offer several ways to complain of harassment to guard against supervisor inaction