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 who has lost his job may look at the resulting workforce and conclude that his race or other protected characteristic was why he was part of the reduction in force. Prepare for such potential charges with solid documentation showing you had a business reason for each position you cut—and that you didn’t consider who held the job.
Merely creating a hotline for reporting discrimination isn’t enough to protect an employer against harassment and discrimination claims.
Some employees joke around by calling other workers “old man” or making other insensitive ageist comments. You should certainly discourage comments that diminish employees, customers or others based on their protected characteristics. However, a few isolated incidents won’t mean a lost lawsuit if you also make sure that you terminate employees only for legitimate business reasons.
A snarky reply to an employee’s email—plus alleged retaliation—has landed a Manhattan firm in legal hot water.
The EEOC has filed suit against NFI Roadrail and NFI Industries as a result of a pay disparity at its Irving facility. According to the complaint, the company pays men significantly more than women who perform the same work.
Here’s an important reminder that employers aren’t responsible for preventing every ugly workplace incident. Just because someone vandalizes an employee’s property doesn’t mean you will be liable for creating a hostile work environment.
Was demography or economic distress to blame for the sudden jump in age discrimination charges between 2006 and 2008?
You may think that time is on your side after you tackled hostility in the workplace. But that isn’t always the case. For example, firing an employee who had to work in a hostile work environment for years may still mean liability, even if you recently cleaned up the workplace.
When nasty racial words are tossed around in a workplace, you may think the target of those words is the only person who can sue for racial harassment. Not true. It’s not necessary for someone to have protected status to complain about harassment or discrimination.
Sometimes, the most sensible solution to an ongoing employee complaint is to transfer the employee. But some employees may see that as retaliation, especially if the “fresh start” turns out to be a false one. Such a retaliation claim is unlikely to succeed as long as there was no change in title, major job responsibilities, pay and benefits.