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Showing 18 posts in U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”).

The EEOC Retaliates on Retaliation, and Employers are Caught in the Crossfire

Posted In EEOC, U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”)

NOTE: The EEOC guidance on retaliation can be found here:
https://www.eeoc.gov/laws/guidance/retaliation-guidance.cfm

One of the hands-down most difficult positions an employer may find itself in is the time period immediately following an employee reporting discrimination. If the employee engages in some form of conduct that is protected by a nondiscrimination statute such as Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 or the Americans with Disabilities Act, any adverse action taken by the employer against that employee may be scrutinized as sign of retaliation, which is prohibited by these laws. Thus, the reporting of potential discrimination or the filing of any claim with the Equal Employment Opportunities Commission (“EEOC”) and other investigators produces a chilling effect on the discipline or even termination of that employee, even for unrelated issues.  More >

Employers, Beware: New EEOC Proposed Rule Would Gather Data, but Not Context

Posted In EEOC, U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”)

Every year, employers with 100 or more employees are required by the Equal Employment Opportunities Commission (“EEOC”) to invite employment applicants to self-identify their gender, race, and ethnicity on an EEO-1 report. On February 1st, however, the EEOC published a Proposed Rule that requires these employers to also include pay data and hours worked for all employees. This new regulation will provide a fairly powerful tool to the EEOC, but it could also prove to be a nightmare for employers. More >

EEOC: Title VII Prohibits Employment Discrimination Based On Sexual Orientation

The recent U.S. Supreme Court decision in Obergefell v. Hodges struck down restrictions on marriage by same-sex couples, but it did not address other forms of discrimination based on sexual orientation, such as in employment. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, however, did not wait for a ruling from the high court, instead ruling on its own that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prevents discrimination in an employment context on the basis of sexual orientation. This decision, Baldwin v. Foxx,[1] broadens Title VII protections considerably, although it remains to be seen if the high court agrees with the EEOC interpretation. More >

How Should Employers Provide Bathrooms for Transgender Employees? OSHA Has the Answer.

Posted In OSHA, U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”)

One of the great equalizing principles in life is that everyone, regardless of gender, has to use a bathroom. This leads to one of the touchier issues involving employers and transgender employees, however, as bathroom use is generally divided by gender. Should employers allow transgender employees to use the bathroom of her or his gender identity? Should employers require transgender employees to use the bathroom of his or her gender assigned at birth? Luckily, OSHA recently released guidance to help employers understand the needs of transgender persons. More >

The Obergefell Decision and Employers

The recent United States Supreme Court decision in Obergefell v. Hodges significantly altered the legal landscape with respect to same-sex marriages, finding that the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution requires all states to both license in-state same-sex marriages and recognize valid same-sex marriages performed out-of-state. The Court did not, however, go so far as to reach issues such as discrimination in employment or public accommodation. So, while legal same-sex marriage is the law of the land, those newly-married couples may face legal uncertainty when it comes to discrimination in public accommodations or their place of employment, unless contravening state law applies. That said, there are still several ways that the Obergefell decision and its counterpart, United States v. Windsor, will affect employers and employees. More >

Does your ADA accommodation have to be perfect, or can it just get the job done?

Posted In Americans with Disabilities Act, U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”)

The Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”) requires that employers provide “reasonable accommodations” to those with disabilities to perform the essential functions of their jobs. These accommodations cannot impose an undue hardship on the employer, however. This necessarily raises the question as to whether an accommodation must be the accommodation a disabled employee requests or if an employer may substitute an accommodation that reasonably facilitates the employee in his or her employment. The Second Circuit, in the case of Noll v. IBM, recently sided with the employer, ruling that an employee is not entitled to the “perfect” accommodation, merely a reasonable one. More >

What Employers Need to Know about Religious Discrimination after EEOC v. Abercrombie & Fitch

Posted In Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”)

It’s rather fitting that the Supreme Court’s decision in EEOC v. Abercrombie & Fitch Stores turns on the idea of one’s belief; it is, after all, a decision about religious discrimination under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The belief at issue, however, is not the belief of the claimant of religious discrimination, but rather the belief of the employer.

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Complaining to the Boss? The Second Circuit Says That's Protected

Posted In EEOC, Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”)

In 2011, the U.S. Supreme Court held in Kasten v. Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics Corporation that oral complaints are protected by anti-relation provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”), but it did not address a vital question: must those complaints be “filed” with a government agency to receive protection against retaliation, or will simple oral complaints to an employer trigger such provisions?[1] The Second Circuit recently moved to fill that gap, ruling in Greathouse v. JHS Security, Inc. that merely “filing” an oral complaint with an employer is enough to trigger anti-retaliation provisions of the FLSA[2].

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A Title VII Transition?: Protections for Transgender Persons in the Workplace

Posted In Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”)

Three years ago, the EEOC issued an opinion which held, for the first time, that discrimination against transgender persons based on gender identity is impermissible sex discrimination under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. See Macy v. Holder (Apr. 20, 2012). Last month, the EEOC revisited discrimination against transgender persons and released a decision that sheds some light on how the practical applications of this finding may affect employers, holding that certain bathroom restrictions for a transgender employee constituted discrimination. See Lusardi v. McHugh (Apr. 1, 2015). More >

ADA “Direct Threat” Defense Just Got a Little Easier

Posted In ADA Amendments Act of 2008 (“ADAAA”), Adverse Employment Action, Americans with Disabilities Act, EEOC, U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”)

The rights and protections afforded to those with disabilities by the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”) are not without limitations. Accommodations for disabled employees must be reasonable, and the employee must still be able to perform essential job functions with an accommodation. Additionally, the employee’s disability cannot pose a risk to her- or himself or others in the course of job functions if that risk cannot be eliminated or reduced by a reasonable accommodation. This is known as the “direct threat” defense – adverse employment or hiring actions taken against an employee or applicant were done so to mitigate a direct threat to the safety of the employee or others. More >

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