EEOC Taking Close Look at Hiring Decisions

November 13, 2011 - by: admin 1 COMMENTS

Someone applies for a job and doesn’t get it. End of story? Not necessarily. More than 6,300 unsuccessful job applicants have complained to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) so far this fiscal year, claiming illegal discrimination kept them out of a job.

Bass Pro, Weight Watchers in EEOC’s Sights

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Categories: Agency Insight

Ninth Circuit Continues Benefits for Same-Sex Partners of State Employees

November 13, 2011 - by: admin 0 COMMENTS

By Dinita L. James

In the case of Collins v. Brewer, a federal judge from Alaska, deciding a case from Arizona, barred the state’s attempt to do away with benefits for same-sex domestic partners of state employees. Earlier this year, there was an argument on the case before a three-judge panel of the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals (Arizona’s federal appellate court), to which Governor Jan Brewer and the state had appealed.

On September 6, the Ninth Circuit ruled that the lower court was right, with Judge Mary M. Schroeder, who formerly served on the Arizona Court of Appeals, writing the opinion for a unanimous court. Thus, state employees with same-sex domestic partners will keep their benefits for the time being at least. State employees lost coverage for their opposite-sex domestic partners in January 2011.

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Categories: Legal News

American Indian and Alaska Native Heritage Month

November 13, 2011 - by: admin 0 COMMENTS

American Indians and Alaska Natives is one of the six major race categories. Each November, the United States celebrates American Indian and Alaska Native Heritage Month. Here are some facts from the U.S. Census Bureau on the group:

  • As of the 2010 Census, the population of American Indians and Alaska Natives in the United States was 5.2 million, making up 1.7 percent of the total population. Of this total, 2.9 million were American Indian and Alaska Native only, and 2.3 million were American Indian and Alaska Native in combination with one or more other races.

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Categories: Just the Facts

OFCCP Leader Highlights Mission Protecting Workers, Promoting Diversity, and Enforcing the Law

October 16, 2011 - by: admin 1 COMMENTS

Patricia Shiu, director of the U.S. Department of Labor‘s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP), delivered the keynote speech at the annual meeting of federal contractors and OFCCP representatives for the National Industry Liaison Group on July 27 in New Orleans. The key portions of Shiu’s speech, in which she provided important updates on the OFCCP, are below. The OFCCP is responsible for the enforcement of federal contractors’ affirmative action and nondiscrimination obligations.

Welcome to the 29th annual Industry Liaison Group Conference. I know how important it is for all of us to get together like this, and I want to thank each and every one of you for spending your time here this week. . . .

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Categories: Agency Insight / Feature

Unemployed Need Not Apply

October 16, 2011 - by: admin 2 COMMENTS

Last month we covered the emerging issue of discrimination against the unemployed. This month, we follow that up with employment law attorney John T. Neighbors giving his insight on the legal and practical considerations of having a policy that the unemployed need not apply for vacant positions with your company.

Legal Implications

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Working Through Religious Beliefs in the Workplace

October 16, 2011 - by: admin 0 COMMENTS

By Sharolyn Whiting-Ralston

In today’s world, employers face cultural and faith issues in the workplace. To further complicate matters, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has begun paying more attention to those issues. A recent case out of Tulsa, Oklahoma, serves as a reminder about your obligations when taking into account cultural or religious differences among employees and customers.

In July, a young Tulsa woman received a $20,000 jury verdict against fashion giant Abercrombie & Fitch. The award came after the judge in the case determined she had been the victim of unlawful discrimination because Abercrombie failed to accommodate her religious beliefs.

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Categories: Legal News

Violent Crimes Down Six Percent Nationwide in 2010

October 16, 2011 - by: admin 0 COMMENTS

The number of violent crimes declined 6% nationwide in 2010 from a year earlier, according to an annual report released week by the FBI. Murder and manslaughter offenses fell 4.2% in 2010, reported rapes declined 5%, and aggravated assaults fell 4.1% from 2009. The number of robberies fell by 10%, and the number of property crimes fell by 2.7%.

The FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program is a nationwide, cooperative statistical effort of more than 18,000 city, county, and state law enforcement agencies voluntarily reporting data on crime brought to their attention. During 2010, law enforcement agencies active in the UCR Program represented 97.4% of the total population. The coverage amounted to 98.4% of the U.S. population in Metropolitan Statistical Areas, 92.3% of the population in cities outside metropolitan areas, and 92.7% in non-metropolitan counties.

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Categories: Just the Facts

Could “Unemployed” Be the Next Protected Characteristic?

September 18, 2011 - by: admin 6 COMMENTS

In a market in which the number of people looking for jobs wildly exceeds the number of jobs available, some employers have opted to narrow the field of applicants by eliminating unemployed workers from consideration. While some employers restrict the field to individuals who are currently employed, others allow candidates who are “recently unemployed” to apply. Although the reasons employers impose these limitations are not altogether clear, some jobs may have skill requirements that change quickly, and employers may be anxious to hire workers with the most up-to-the-minute skills. Whatever the reason, the tactic has drawn sharp criticism from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and legislative responses at the state and federal level.

Pending Federal Legislation

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Categories: Feature / Flashpoint

EEOC Promotes Hiring Recently Released Prisoners

September 18, 2011 - by: admin 2 COMMENTS

On June 21, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) Chair Jacqueline Berrien participated with Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis and Attorney General Eric Holder in a roundtable discussion of employment strategies for getting individuals with criminal records, including recently released prisoners, back to work. Employers, service providers, academics, policy advocates, and former prisoners also participated. The meeting was sponsored by the Obama administration’s Reentry Council, an interagency group of cabinet-level officials whose goal is to coordinate federal agency resources to assist former prisoners in becoming productive citizens, thereby saving taxpayer dollars by reducing recidivism.

One of the first products of this collaboration is the EEOC’s “Reentry MythBusters,” fact sheets designed to dispel common misconceptions that those with criminal records are automatically barred from employment. One “MythBuster” addresses the Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 implications of using arrest and conviction records as a basis for employment decisions. While the EEOC acknowledges that an employer isn’t prohibited from requiring applicants to provide information about all prior convictions or incarcerations, they may not treat people with the same criminal records differently because of their race or national origin.

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Categories: Agency Insight

When the Offender Becomes the Plaintiff

September 18, 2011 - by: admin 0 COMMENTS

Faced with racially motivated workplace killings, reporters from ABC’s Primetime Live sniffing around your facility, and a spate of race discrimination lawsuits, cracking down on racial harassment might be a good thing, right? Maybe so in some utopian world of rationality and logic, but we live and work “down the rabbit hole.” In our world, terminating a supervisor for sending a racist joke will earn you a jury trial for a race discrimination claim filed by the sacked supervisor. If you haven’t lost your appetite yet, read on for the latest from the Eleventh U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

History

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Categories: Legal News

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