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.

Performance evaluations are important tools to help employers gauge whether employees are performing at expected levels. They can help organizations spot talent and leadership potential, while identifying areas where employees need extra training and support. Evaluations also can protect employers from frivolous lawsuits filed by employees who claim they’ve been demoted, fired or otherwise unfairly treated when the real reason was poor performance ...

In North Carolina, it's not just sexual harassment lawsuits brought under federal law that you have to worry about. Your organization could face state tort law claims, such as “intentional infliction of emotional distress” or “negligent supervision” if an employee’s behavior is extreme enough and management doesn’t take steps to stop it ...

Employees seeking relief from on-the-job discrimination on the basis of their race, sex, age, national origin or religion can typically pursue their claims under federal law, Ohio law (Ohio Revised Code Section 4112.02) or both. In most cases, it doesn’t matter whether the employee sues under state or federal law—the court will apply the same cases and reasoning. The same is not true in pregnancy discrimination cases. That’s because the Ohio Civil Rights Commission interprets pregnancy discrimination quite differently than does its federal counterpart, the EEOC ...

Q. I know the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) gives disabled employees special rights. But I read that the law also extends to employees who aren’t disabled. How is that so? —N.L. ...

You’ve heard a rumor that one of your employees is looking for or has already accepted another job. Then you call him into a meeting to discuss the matter. You ask whether the rumor is true. That’s when the employee admits the job hunt, but hits you with the reason: He claims the work environment is so hostile that he has no choice but to look. What’s your next step? Do you fire him since he’s looking for other work? Or do you tell him you will investigate his claims and then follow up? ...

Employees who complain of harassment may actually be experiencing a personality conflict. Circumstances that lead someone to see harassment based on race, disability or gender may be nothing more than the result of difficulty getting along with others. If your internal investigation reveals no real discrimination, you may be tempted to move the feuding parties as far away from each other as possible. But that may backfire, especially if the person you transfer is the one who complained of discrimination in the first place ...

It's well-established that employees who claim they have been subjected to a hostile work environment but don’t take advantage of their employer’s complaint process won’t get a chance to take their cases to court. Ever since the landmark U.S. Supreme Court decisions in the Faragher and Burlington Industries cases, employers can use their complaint processes as a defense against co-worker harassment. But what about under state laws, such as the New York State Human Rights Law? ...

A lawsuit filed in Manhattan Supreme Court in July describes a lurid and hostile scene at Morgan Stanley. A former client-services associate in the Melville, Long Island, office alleges her boss, a broker, stuck his hand up her skirt, stole underwear from her gym bag, sent her offensive notes and suggested they have sex. The lawsuit is the latest in a string of sex-bias suits that have already cost the firm $100 million ...

Lucas County Democratic Party Chairman John Irish is in hot water after holding a golf fundraiser that featured female strippers. Employees of Scarlett’s Cabaret in Toledo and Club Diamonds in Oregon staffed the drink carts, and at least one woman raised her top and dropped her shorts for a group of golfers ...

No single federal law governs job applications.