Discrimination and Harassment

Discrimination and harassment claims often increase in a down economy. Learn the proper techniques for conducing proper workplace harassment investigations, providing sexual harassment training, and more to reduce claims of employment discrimination and preventing sexual harassment in the workplace.

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The U.S. Supreme Court ruled April 29 that courts have the authority to review whether the EEOC made a good-faith attempt to conciliate discrimination complaints before suing employers, as required by Title VII of the Civil Rights Act. The unanimous decision in Mach Mining v. EEOC is a limited win for employers.
Under the Equal Pay Act, men and women performing substantially similar jobs must be paid the same. But what exactly constitutes “substantially similar” jobs?
An antigay activist has failed in his attempt to defeat the Houston Equal Rights Ordinance, which would recognize sexual orientation and gender identity as protected classes.
Over EEOC objections, a trial to determine whether FedEx discriminated against deaf employees has been moved from Baltimore to a Pittsburgh courtroom. FedEx sought the change of venue, noting that its headquarters and those responsible for developing company policies on training and accommodation are based in Pittsburgh.
Arguing that Title VII’s prohibition on sex discrimination covers transgender employees, the EEOC successfully pursued a bias claim filed by an employee who was fired shortly after beginning a transition from male to female.
Pope Francis used the occasion of his weekly general audience on April 29 to call for pay equity between men and women.
On April 1, Holy Spirit Hospital in Camp Hill began refusing to hire anyone who tests positive for nicotine use.
Good news if an employee isn’t satisfied with whatever you did to try to address a problem she raised: She can’t just quit in frustration and expect to win a lawsuit against you.

It’s not always possible to accommodate an employee’s disability. Employers do have to consider possible accommodations that allow a disabled employee to retain his job. However, it is unreasonable to expect the employer to entirely eliminate an essential job function.

If you happen to fire an older worker but retain younger ones, you should expect a potential age discrimination lawsuit. If you’re prepared, you stand a dramatically better chance of winning.
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