• LinkedIn
  • YouTube
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Google+

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.

Floridians filed 307 more discrimination complaints with the EEOC in fiscal year 2011 than they did in 2010. The greatest number of Florida complaints—3,231 in all—alleged retaliation.
Here’s a reminder for harried and overworked HR professionals: Even if your anti-harassment policy states that you will investigate all harassment complaints, you don’t have to drop everything to chase down clearly meritless allegations.
The Court of Appeal of California has ruled for the first time that a partner who reports sexual harassment is protected from retaliation under the Fair Employment and Hous­­­­ing Act (FEHA).
Pennsylvanians filed 4,302 EEOC discrimination and retaliation complaints in fiscal year 2011—406 fewer than in 2010 but still up sharply from the 3,448 complaints filed in 2009.
North Carolina employees are doing more than their share to keep the EEOC busy, filing more discrimination complaints per capita than the national average. Even so, North Carolina filings fell last year after spiking upward in 2010.
The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has taken on medical marijuana and the ADA, concluding that individuals who use marijuana, even if doing so legally under state law, aren’t ­protected from discrimination under the ADA. That means disciplining employees for using medical marijuana won’t violate the ADA.
In April, the EEOC issued a new Enforcement Guidance document on the use of criminal history information in making hiring and other employment decisions. In light of the guidance and the EEOC’s increased focus on discrimination in hiring, employers should review and update their criminal history screening policies and practices.

Do you ask applicants what year they graduated from high school or college (or otherwise finished their education)? Does your application re­­quest that information? Watch out!

The DOL's Office of Disability Employment Policy commissioned a study to explore barriers to employing the disabled and guidance for employers in hiring and managing disabled em­­ployees. The study urges employers to follow these strategies to avoid age discrimination complaints:

When the EEOC declared it was starting an enforcement effort aimed at protecting Hispanic ­workers from harassment and discrimination, smart employers promptly looked at their organ­­izations and corrected any problems. Those that didn’t are now paying the price.