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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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Under some circumstances, making an employee move to a different job location can be viewed as an adverse employment action. However, minor inconveniences don’t cut it.
In a case likely to be appealed, the EEOC has lost a bid to have federal courts within the 8th Circuit consider request for religious accommodation to be protected activity.
It’s unusual, but sometimes workers claim that being forced to attend a training session was discrimination.
Some employees think that if they point out racial homogeneity in a particular office or function, they will be able to persuade a court that they have been discriminated against—even if they have no proof that anything bad happened to them.
Smart employers make sure they document—in advance—the underlying reasons for any disciplinary actions. When preparing documentation, be sure to provide all the details, especially if two employees committed arguably similar offenses but were punished differently.
When Kenneth, who is black, complained that his co-workers used a white hood to harass and intimidate him, management told him the incident was meant as a joke.
Generally speaking, the law does not tolerate inconsistency very well. That’s one reason it’s so important to be careful about how you explain someone’s termination. If your story changes, don’t be surprised if it winds up being used against you.
Employers don’t have to create a perfect workplace that’s completely free of harassment. They merely have to respond to reported harassment in a way that’s calculated to stop it fast.
Courts seldom give much weight to complaints about general disrespect, micromanaging supervisors or impossible workloads unless it is quite clear that those conditions are meant to punish protected activity or are reserved for members of a protected class while others aren’t targeted.
Out-of-state entities with the power to dictate a New York employer’s hiring and retention policies take notice: You can be subject to liability under the New York Human Rights Law if you “aid and abet” discrimination against individuals who have a prior criminal conviction, even if you are not the direct employer of those individuals.
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