DISCRIMINATION / HARASSMENT

Most 2013 EEOC charges were filed by employees in 10 states

04/18/2014
Ten states—mostly home to the nation’s largest cities or located in the South—accounted for 56% of all EEOC charges filed in 2013.

Can the government dictate the 'look' of the people we prefer to hire?

04/15/2014
Q. We are a retail company. Our public image and our reputation for being a patriotic corporate citizen are both very important to us. We tend to hire a predominately young workforce and individuals with trendy, but “clean cut” and energetic appearances. I also don’t want to be forced to hire people with head coverings or facial hair, which we don’t allow. Can the government force us to do that?

Textile rental firm settles sex discrimination charges

04/15/2014
Minnetonka, MN-based G&K Services has settled sex discrimination charges leveled by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs.

EEOC sues medical device firm for age, sex discrimination

04/15/2014
The EEOC alleges Chanhassen, MN-based PMT Corp. discriminated against older and female applicants for company sales positions. In a law­­suit filed in federal court, the EEOC claims the company’s president and CEO specifically instructed the HR department not to hire women and people who graduated from college more than 10 years ago for sales positions.

Owners of Rochester, MN hotel settle age bias suits

04/15/2014
Interstate Hotels and Resorts, the Virginia-based firm that managed Rochester’s Kahler Grand Hotel, has settled age discrimination charges that four former employees brought against the company. Interstate began managing the hotel, which serves the Mayo Clinic, in January 2013.

Employee must be open to compromise before quitting

04/15/2014
Employees can sometimes quit and sue for constructive discharge if their employer made work life intolerable. That doesn’t mean an employee can quit anytime she faces a difficult situation. She has to let her employer try to resolve the problem first.

Male candidate needs to 'support his family'? That's no reason to pay him more

04/15/2014
Here’s a warning to pass on to any manager or supervisor involved in employee interviewing, hiring or supervision: Never make a sexist comment about pay or benefits. It may come back to haunt the organization should an employee later sue for sex discrimination or pay equity.

Know the law: Background checks continue to trip up employers

04/14/2014
If you don’t follow the rules, background checks can cause more trouble than they prevent. Your background process can also become the basis for a class-action lawsuit.

Board members may count as employees for Title VII suit

04/14/2014
Some small nonprofit organizations may think they don’t have to follow Title VII anti-discrimination rules because they only have one or two employees. They could be wrong if the board that manages the organization pays officers to attend meetings and generally holds them accountable for assignments and meetings.

Document that employee requested transfer

04/14/2014
If an employee requests a transfer, be sure to document that he did so.

Handling new hires or promotions from within, document every step of interview process

04/14/2014
Document every step of the interview process for new applicants and internal candidates. Make sure the process is uniform and that every interviewee gets the same treatment.

One insensitive comment isn't enough to create a hostile environment

04/14/2014

People say stupid things all the time. When it happens at work, the consequences can be profound. But many dumb slips of the tongue turn out to be merely insensitive, not malicious. As long as the comments don’t become frequent or more severe, there won’t usually be any lasting damage.

Beware firing worker who moonlights while out on medical disability leave

04/14/2014
It may seem wrong for an employee who is out on disability leave to work another job. But firing her for allegedly lying about her medical condition may backfire in the form of a disability or retaliation claim.

Here's an easy way to prevent age bias claims

04/14/2014
One of the best ways to prevent age discrimination is also one of the simplest: Make your hiring process age-blind by removing age tipoffs from your application.

Still no handbook? Act fast after complaint

04/14/2014

Do you work in an HR department that still hasn’t gotten around to creating an employee handbook? Don’t despair. As long as everyone in HR and management makes sure employees know the company won’t tolerate sexual harassment and encourages immediate reporting of harassment, you can probably escape liability by acting fast on any reports you do receive.

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