Human Resources News & Insights

Discrimination & Harassment

Workplace discrimination and harassment are barred by a number of federal laws, including Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA), and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

What? Hooded sheets plus a noose, and firm still skirts harassment charge

Despite mountains of damning evidence, one employer avoided losing a racially hostile workplace lawsuit. The ruling serves as a reminder to HR pros everywhere on the importance of clear policies and consistent follow-through.

A taste of its own medicine: EEOC ordered to fork over $1.9M for ‘frivolous’ claims

The EEOC has a long history among employers of filing lawsuits for dubious reasons, and in this case, that strategy seems to have come back to haunt it.

Age bias lawsuit: Little white lies about worker’s departure come back to haunt employer

Sometimes employers feel the need to fib a little about why an employee is leaving the company – to avoid damaging morale.

Stage set for landmark equal pay lawsuit: What’s at stake in Google’s HR nightmare?

After the PR nightmare it suffered following a male staffer’s memo on “gender stereotypes,” Google is now facing an even bigger headache — a pay-discrimination claim that could become a class-action suit with thousands of class members.

ADA dilemma: Did over-accommodating disabled worker leave company trapped?

Say a well-meaning manager wants to do the right thing for a disabled worker and winds up offering an accommodation that goes above and beyond what the ADA requires. Then, when management changes, a different manager decides the arrangement is no longer feasible. Is the company bound by law to continue providing that accommodation?

EEOC files landmark parental leave lawsuit: Was dad discriminated against?

When this employer rolled out its parental leave policy a few years ago, it probably never imagined it would be facing an EEOC discrimination lawsuit by one of its employees. But that’s just what happened to one of the biggest names in cosmetics. 

Pot in the workplace: New ruling will spark drug policy changes

Another court has handed down a ruling on a company’s drug policy, and courts now seem to be sending a very clear message to employers: Don’t automatically terminate marijuana users with legal prescriptions just because they failed a drug test. 

A 5-part checklist that works for any ADA accommodation request

From extended leave to drug-usage during work hours, there are plenty of reasonable accommodations employers may be required to make under the ADA. The only weapon companies can rely on to safely shoot down unreasonable accommodation requests is the law’s interactive process. 

Yes, one word can create a hostile work environment — especially, if it’s this word

All it takes is a single “extreme isolated act of discrimination” by a manager or supervisor to get your company sued for creating a hostile work environment, a court just ruled.

Firing staffer for ‘gender stereotypes’ memo sets off Google’s free speech nightmare

When Google fired a software engineer over a memo he wrote criticizing the company’s diversity efforts, little did it know it would set off a chain of events that put it smack dab in the middle of a national media frenzy — and an HR nightmare.