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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.

An employee has sued for religious discimination after he was fired from a plastics plant for refusing to wear a sticker saying 666, noting the number of days the plant has gone accident-free. The employee noted his “sincere religious belief that to wear the number 666 would be to accept the mark of the beast and be condemned to hell.”

Once in a while, the honeymoon is barely over before a new em­­ployee starts to struggle. Since every job has a learning curve, you may hesitate to terminate right away. But you can’t ignore the problems, either.

Amtrak will give an HR executive working at Philadelphia’s 30th Street Station a salary boost of almost $16,000 to bring her into parity with what the railroad pays men doing the same job. She will also receive a lump-sum payment of $171,000.
A boss’s secret preju­dice won’t support an employee’s sex-bias lawsuit if the employer provides equal opportunities to both men and women. That’s true even if the sexist boss reacts outrageously when the subordinate quits.
Objects can become powerful symbols. That’s certainly true of nooses, which black Americans see as infamous reminders of a past in which lynchings were relatively common, especially in the South. That’s why you must instruct supervisors and managers: Any reference to hanging, ropes or nooses is absolutely forbidden in the workplace.

AT&T has settled a suit filed by former workers who took early retirement offers from the company and then asked to be rehired. AT&T claimed early retirement packages made the workers ineligible to return to work.

A Texas employee of TIAA-CREF is suing the retirement fund giant after she was fired for allegedly sharing her computer password with a co-worker. In June 2011, she resigned to avoid being fired for the offense.
When employees can’t find an attorney to handle their em­­ployment discrimination claims, they sometimes go it alone, filing their own EEOC complaints and then moving on to federal court. Even if so-called pro se litigants pre­sent confusing and seemingly contradictory cases, chances are a federal judge will expect the em­­ployer to respond.

Sexual harassment allegations often come down to he said/she said arguments. Without hearing from both sides, there’s no way to figure out what happened. If one of the people involved in the allegations won’t talk, you can discipline him for refusing to co­­operate.

Here’s a tip for handling a difficult and argumentative employee. If she tells her supervisors she doesn’t like her job, wants to avoid some tasks and otherwise doesn’t seem interested in progressing, note her lousy attitude.