The HR Specialist: Texas Employment Law

Here’s a cautionary tale for super­­visors who have a learning-disabled subordinate. Do all you can to accommodate the employee and don’t let co-workers—or anyone in the workplace—make fun of disability traits.

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The run-up to an election can spark heated debate around the watercooler. Employers need to balance the interest of employees’ free speech with maintaining order and productivity. Draft a policy that minimizes distractions yet allows reasonable free speech.

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The U.S. Supreme Court in June ruled that pharmaceutical sales representatives are indeed outside salespeople under the terms of the Fair Labor Standards Act in a case that could have far-reaching effects on other wage-and-hour issues.

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An electrician with 25 years of service to the Plano Independent School District has sued, alleging he was fired because of his age, not because the district needed to cut staff.

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Ever since enactment of the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act in 2009, pay equity has been a hot employment law topic. In the intervening years, many employers have proactively gone over their pay scales and made adjustments after discovering apparent pay inequalities that crept in over the years.

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The former director of public information at the Texas Department of Crimi­nal Justice (TDCJ) is suing the agency after she was demoted and subsequently resigned. She says her demotion was retaliation for blowing the whistle on internal violations of state law and policy.

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Stevens Transport, a Dallas-area trucking company, has agreed to pay $50,000 to settle EEOC charges that it refused to hire a paraplegic man for a management position due to his disability.

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Texas employees are doing more than their share to keep the EEOC busy, filing more discrimination charges per capita than the national average.

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When an employee complains she is being harassed, that’s protected activity that cannot be punished. Like­­wise, complaining that a co-worker is being harassed is protected activity. But it’s not protected activity if an employee complains that someone not connected with the employer is being harassed.

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Resolve every sexual harassment complaint ASAP. That way, it won’t come back to haunt you.

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