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.

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HR Law 101: The ADA requires employers to walk a fine line between enforcing reasonable workplace safety and behavioral rules and making accommodations for those who are addicted to drugs or alcohol. The law doesn't protect current users of illegal (i.e., “street”) drugs, but it does protect alcoholics and those who’ve shaken their drug addiction sufficiently to no longer be classified as active illegal users ...

The EEOC sued a Munice, Ind., Dollar General retailer on a dyslexic employee’s behalf and won a $47,500 settlement. The employee had asked for help reading during a mandatory test that followed computer-based training, but his request was denied.
Camden Place Health and Rehab in Greensboro has settled a disability discrimination claim with a former employee for $51,000. The certified nursing assistant had been fired after she refused to supervise patients during their outdoor smoking breaks.
Here’s an important factor to consider when terminating an employee who has recently complained about alleged discrimination of some sort: If she can show at least a tenuous connection between her complaint (like its timing) and her discharge, she will probably be able to proceed with her lawsuit.

Charges of job discrimination traditionally spike during recessions. And that certainly happened during the Great Recession, as employee job-bias complaints filed with the EEOC reached all-time highs of more than 99,000 complaints in 2010, 2011 and 2012. However, an improving economy had employees in a less litigious mood during fiscal year 2013.

HR Law 101: A few years ago, the EEOC released guidelines that clarify employers' responsibilities in applying the ADA to workers with psychiatric disabilities. The law protects persons with mental disabilities, and employers must reasonably accommodate them ...

If you’re honest when law enforcement officials ask for information about a potential crime involving an employee, the worker can’t sue for false arrest, even if he’s not formally charged or eventually is found not guilty.

The EEOC has taken up the case of a man who worked as a translator for Haitian workers at a Lumber Bridge chicken farm. The man allegedly complained that Haitian workers at Mountaire Farms were treated more harshly than other employees. He claims that he made one complaint too many and was fired for it.

HR Law 101: Under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967, employers with 20 or more workers can’t engage in personnel practices that discriminate against individuals age 40 and older. Most age discrimination cases grow out of wrongful discharge and mandatory retirement policies, but they can involve any adverse change in working conditions ...

Employees who complain about dis­­crimination can sue if they suffer re­­taliation for complaining. Retaliation is anything that would dissuade a reasonable employee from complaining in the first place. The key is “reasonable.”
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