workplace discrimination Archives

The role of constructive discharge in employment law cases

A Tennessee employee who files a workplace discrimination claim under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 generally has to stay on the job to mitigate the damages. However, this may not be the case if working conditions are so unbearable that a reasonable person would have no choice but to quit. Those who resign because of unbearable conditions are said to have gone through a constructive discharge.

Female physicians report high rate of workplace discrimination

Physicians in Tennessee who are also mothers are likely to experience a high rate of discrimination at work connected to being a parent according to a study published in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine. Almost 80 percent of 6,000 respondents to a survey reported some form of discrimination. In about two-thirds of the cases, the reported discrimination was gender-based and in about one-third, it was maternity-based. The survey defined maternal discrimination as relating to breast-feeding, maternity leave or pregnancy.

Single slur might make a hostile work environment

Tennessee employees might be able to file a lawsuit based on a single extreme incident of a workplace slur based on an April 25 decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit. The court ruled that in some circumstances, this could constitute creating a hostile work environment. An employee representing himself had filed a lawsuit against his employer in a federal district court that granted summary judgment to the employer. However, when the man appealed the decision, the appellate court held that the district court had not sufficiently reviewed the worker's claims.

How worker misconduct can influence discrimination claims

When employers in Tennessee and around the country are accused of letting a worker go because of race, age, gender, religion or national origin, they sometimes argue that the employee concerned should have been fired for misconduct anyway. This is known as an after-acquired evidence defense, and it can save employers money even in situations where discrimination can be proved. Employers generally prepare to mount this kind of defense by interviewing the coworkers of employees who have filed discrimination complaints and studying their work habits, online activities and emails.

Workplace discrimination and cancer victims

Tennessee employees who have had cancer may be interested to learn that according to a study, despite a 2009 amendment to the Americans with Disabilities Act, people who have had cancer are still facing discrimination in the workplace at the same rate as before the amendment. In 1990, the ADA was passed to offer protection to disabled employees. However, employees whose cancer was in remission were not protected. Therefore, if they faced discrimination based on their history of cancer, there was no recourse for them under the ADA. The 2009 amendment changed that.

Title VII protects against sexual orientation discrimination

Tennessee employees who identify as part of the LGBT community may be interested to learn that, on April 4, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit ruled that employers cannot discriminate against individuals based on their sexual orientation. This significant decision means that the court considers sexual orientation discrimination to be illegal under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 even though sexual orientation is not specifically mentioned in that statute.

Older workers have more trouble getting call-backs

Many Tennessee residents who are considered to be baby boomers intend to continue working past what is considered to be the conventional retirement age. However, research shows that it can be very difficult to actually get hired the older an applicant gets.

How employers should handle religion at work

Tennessee employers are encouraged to make themselves aware of current events as they deal with religion in their workplaces. This is because public events or incidents centered on religion may influence how those of different faiths interact with each other at work. As a general rule, it is illegal to discriminate against an employee due to his or her religious beliefs or those of his or her friends or family members.

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