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Discrimination / Harassment

Discipline consistently, equitably to avoid discrimination liability

Every employee who breaks the same rule should receive the same level of discipline. Absent some solid, fact-based reason, treating some employees more leniently than others is practically begging to be sued for discrimination. That’s especially true if a manager treats members of a particular protected class more harshly or more favorably than employees who belong to different protected classes.

Women still being asked inappropriate interview questions

Every manager knows some job interview questions are off-limits because they can lead to discriminatory hiring decisions, right? Wrong, according to a new survey.

New hires can’t use religion as reason to withhold SSN

You must offer religious accommodations when possible, but not if it would cause you to break the law.

When one employee sues for race bias, brace yourself for a class-action lawsuit

A California judge has given the go-ahead for a massive class-action race discrimination lawsuit against Tesla that may bring over 6,000 Black employees into the lawsuit. It’s the latest legal setback for the automaker, following years of lawsuits alleging Tesla tolerates racial discrimination and harassment at factories in California.

Design benefits plans that equally and fairly serve employees of all ages

When tailoring benefits to appeal to younger members of your workforce, remember your older employees, too. It’s illegal to exclude employees from using any of your benefits on the basis of age.

Ensure dress code doesn’t cause discrimination

If you haven’t reviewed and revised your employee handbook’s dress and grooming policy lately, now is a good time to look for antiquated rules that could trigger lawsuits. That’s especially true if a supervisor tries to enforce out-of-date and potentially discriminatory standards. That’s a lesson one employer recently learned when a supervisor insisted women wear pantyhose and forego cosmetic embellishments that had religious and cultural significance to an employee.

All the ways losing a bias case can cost you

It can be frightening to hear an employee has filed an EEOC complaint or launched a federal discrimination lawsuit. Headlines emphasizing multimillion-dollar jury verdicts don’t help. Here’s what’s at stake should an employee win a discrimination lawsuit.

DEI program survives lawsuit alleging reverse discrimination

A recent 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals case may slow down the fight to kill DEI programs for employers that believe the initiatives are both necessary and serve a legitimate business purpose.

EEOC collects record $665 million from employers

The EEOC collected a record amount of money for victims of employment discrimination, according to the agency’s Annual Performance Report for Fiscal Year 2023. The report says the EEOC took in $665 million from employers on behalf of workers, a 30% increase compared to FY 2022.

Accommodating religion: 6 commandments for managers

With Easter landing on the last day of the month, religious discussions may begin floating through the workplace, and your HR department may receive accommodation requests for some of your team members. You are likely already aware of the caution needed for navigating religion in the workplace. Avoid discrimination and lawsuits with this quick refresher on accommodations and immediate courses of action.