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.

It pays to make every effort to publicize job openings to your current staff and make clear how employees should apply. If you don’t, you face potential discrimination claims ...

Just because the Veteran’s Administration (VA) considers a former soldier to be disabled, that doesn’t automatically mean that person is disabled under other laws, such as the ADA ...

Many employers have run afoul of federal discrimination law by requiring all employees to speak only English at all times. The EEOC has said employers can only set such “English-only” rules if they can show a clear business need ...

Allison Walzer, former editor of the Wilkes-Barre Times Leader, has added a retaliation claim to a pending discrimination lawsuit against the newspaper, where she worked for 24 years ...

Q. One of our male supervisors fired what we in HR thought was a poor-performing female employee. During the exit interview, the terminated employee told us that her supervisor fired her because he was sexually harassing her and she threatened to report him if it didn’t stop. It turned out that her claim was legitimate. We immediately called her back to work.

We thought we had dodged a bullet but, unfortunately, we’ve been contacted by her attorney, who threatened a lawsuit unless we agree to settle her claim for a lot of money. We will contact an attorney to represent us, but we want to know if the fact that we brought her right back to work is going to make a difference? —L.W.

Do you worry you may be courting a discrimination lawsuit when you turn away an applicant or toss an unsolicited résumé in the trash? Rest assured that turning away applicants when you don’t have an opening isn’t likely to get you in trouble ...

Don’t wait for employees to use the magic words—“sexual harassment”—to begin investigating a complaint. It’s up to you to decipher an employee’s protests to determine if they could fall into that legally dangerous harassment-complaint zone ...

When it comes time to fire a difficult employee, focus on clear and easily explained legitimate business reasons for the action you want to take. That means documenting any work problems and relating those problems to the major job functions you hired the employee to perform ...

Thirty states and the District of Columbia have established “lifestyle discrimination” laws that prohibit employers from discriminating against employees or applicants based on the person’s off-duty use of tobacco or participation in other legal though controversial activities ...

Most organizations have comprehensive Internet, e-mail and electronic communications policies that spell out what's acceptable usage and what's not. But few employers have addressed a growing problem: the proliferation of employee Web logs, or "blogs" ...