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April 2014 Archives

CFPB employee testifies about discrimination before Congress

Despite the number of laws enacted to prohibit racial and gender discrimination in the workplace, it still appears to persist. While it is natural to assume that employers should simply know better, employees may still be reluctant to bring legitimate claims to light out of fear that they will be retaliated against.

Equal Pay Day celebrated, but women still lag behind in salaries

While our last post highlighted a proposed equal pay bill that would have closed the gender gap with regard to salaries. In the midst of that post, we neglected to recognize two important anniversaries in the continuing battle for equal rights in the workplace.

Equal pay bill blocked in U.S. Senate

A recent bill that would have narrowed the income gap between men and women has been blocked in the U.S. Senate. Democrats are accusing Republicans of dealing in election-year tactics to deny women a fair chance to make a good living (or at least as much as the average male).

Bill would require sexual harassment training for Congress

Since the 1990s, workplaces throughout the United States have implemented training methods to protect employees from sexual harassment by co-workers and managers. In fact, roughly 60 percent of corporations in the United States are required to train employees to identify the various forms of sexual harassment, subtle or not subtle. Such training should include telling employees whom they should contact to bring a complaint.

Baseball player mocked for taking paternity leave

With another baseball season getting underway last week, one story overshadowed the Dodgers’ quest to repeat as champions of the N.L. West. No, it was not the L.A. Angels’ struggles or Clayton Kershaw’s injury. In fact, it did not have to do with any player’s performance on the field. Instead, a player’s request for paternity leave dominated headlines. 

Sex stereotyping may help anti-gay discrimination cases

A controversial issue may be making its way through the federal court system. Discrimination on the basis of one’s sexual orientation, which is prohibited by California law, is not necessarily protected under Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act. Indeed, sex discrimination is outlawed under federal law, but a growing chorus is seeking that it be expanded to include preferences based on one’s sexual preferences. 

Could accommodations be required for pregnant employees?

Pregnancy discrimination, like other forms of bias and prejudice, is still present in American workplaces. However, it may not be recognized or remedied in the same way. Part of the reason behind this is the vagueness set forth in the 1987 Federal Pregnancy Discrimination Act, which calls for pregnant employees to be treated equally to other workers who have similar abilities. Unfortunately, it does not require employers to give pregnant workers “reasonable accommodations” similar to those guaranteed through the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

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