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.
These days, you’re probably receiving tons of résumés for open positions. You obviously can’t interview all candidates. But don’t get careless about whom you pick to advance to the next screening level.
Hiring rules that end up excluding many applicants who belong to a protected class can spell big trouble. That’s because if the rule has a disparate impact on any particular protected class, it may be invalid and could become the basis for a lawsuit. At a minimum, be prepared to show that the rule is based on business necessity.
Don’t think you have enough employees to be covered by Title VII’s anti-discrimination provisions or other laws? If volunteers help your organization accomplish its work and you don’t count them, think again.
Lawrence Transportation has reached a settlement with a job applicant whom it refused to hire unless he cut off his dreadlocks. In addition to an undisclosed payment, the company agreed to implement and enforce policies banning religious discrimination and provide anti-discrimination training to all employees.
Want to avoid needless and expensive lawsuits? One good place to start is by encouraging respect and civility. That’s because sometimes hurt feelings are enough to spur a lawsuit.
A Dauphin County man who delivered Tastykakes to Giant Food stores is suing both the Tasty Baking Co. and the grocery store chain for religious discrimination after his contract was terminated. But Giant says it had no relationship with the deliveryman and wants to be removed from the suit.
Employers may be sold on the advantages of arbitration over litigation and want to give the process a try. But if they don’t do it just right, chances are they’ll end up spending more time and money. That’s because employees may go to court to challenge an employer’s right to arbitration, adding what amounts to a second lawsuit to the underlying complaint.
Here’s a worry for employers facing sexual harassment charges: If the EEOC decides to take up the case, it can expand the charges to include employees who never actually complained about the harassment and aren’t even around anymore.
The Court of Appeals of Texas has ruled that the 180-day deadline for filing state discrimination charges should be strictly enforced. Employees who file late are out of luck.
Much as you would like to, you can’t control every statement that comes out of supervisors’ mouths. Someday, someone somewhere within your organization will utter an ethnic comment or slur. That doesn’t have to become the basis for a successful lawsuit—as long as you have a track record of treating all employees fairly.