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October 2013 Archives

Study reveals that UCLA's response to discrimination not enough

The University of California at Los Angeles has come under fire lately for issues surrounding workplace discrimination. Following on the heels of a large settlement in a discrimination lawsuit, a new report has come out giving a failing grade to university actions regarding prejudicial faculty practices.

Recent L.A. lawsuits spark some changes

Following the filing of two lawsuits against the city of Los Angeles, a city councilwoman and the city council president are initiating new proposals for the prevention of sexual harassment on the job. Currently, only managers take this training. With the new proposal, employees will also be required to take the training. In addition, the training for sexual harassment will have to be live instead of online. Political leaders are hoping that these proposals will reduce the likelihood of sexual harassment claims against the city.

Judge's ruling in discrimination suit favors plaintiffs

Many employees in California and across the country, at one time or another, may have felt discriminated against at work. According to a report, in 2010, a group lawsuit was filed in New York against Goldman Sachs. The suit alleged that the financial company had been discriminating against women in the workplace; specifically, it said that discrimination was directed against female vice presidents and associates in the form of pay and promotion issues.

New law enacted to protect domestic violence victims

Victims of domestic violence might have been alarmed to hear that a teacher in California was fired from her job after security concerns arose about her estranged husband. After being wrongfully terminated, the teacher lobbied for legislatures to pass a new law that would make sure that no one else was subjected to the same kind of treatment that she was.

Pregnant bartender in California fired

A former bartender in Los Angeles is suing her former employer after she was allegedly fired for being pregnant. She said that her supervisor also rebuked her for not dressing like a California hooker and instead dressing too Midwest conservative. In the lawsuit that the former employee filed against Kings' Head Pub II in Studio City on Oct. 8, she alleged wrongful termination, intentional and negligent infliction of emotional distress and pregnancy discrimination.

Sexual harassment protection not extended to unpaid interns

California readers may take an interest in a recent decision rendered in a New York federal district court. The court ruled that because they are not paid or considered an employee, an intern at a television broadcaster could not file a sexual harassment claim. The judge who heard the case made the ruling based on the fact that New York City's Human Rights Law's protections does not cover unpaid interns. The fact that the woman had not been paid for her work at the broadcaster excluded her from making a harassment claim.

IBM settles discrimination case

IBM has settled a case with the United States Department of Justice and is required to pay fines and revamp its employment policy. IBM was accused of national origin discrimination that was manifested through their stated preference for visa holders. California employees are protected by federal law from being discriminated against on the basis of religion, national origin, race or sex.

California gays targeted by retailer in workplace discrimination

An ex-employee of Home Depot in Santa Ana accused the home improvement store of singling out gay workers for termination in an attempt to cut costs after the start of the 2008 financial meltdown. He sued Home Depot, seeking $100,000 to compensate for the alleged sexual orientation discrimination, sexual harassment and other damages. The 57-year-old former employee said that the unlawful firing happened after he had worked for Home Depot for 25 years.

Job discrimination and criminal records

California residents might be interested to learn that a new bill has been passed that if signed by the governor will keep employers from being able to inquire about an applicant's criminal history on their job applications. The legislation is part of a nationwide movement that is asking lawmakers to make it easier for reformed criminals to obtain employment.

Transgender woman reached rare settlement in discrimination case

People in California my be interested to know that a 29-year-old South Dakota transgender woman was fired from her job shortly after informing her employer that she would soon begin gender transition from male to female. Since federal law does not specifically address transgender discrimination, as California's Fair Employment and Housing Act does, the woman brought suit alleging sex discrimination under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. In September, the parties reached a rare $50,000 settlement.

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