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Posts in Title VII.
By Lauren Daming on June 3, 2015 at 8:53 AM

Discrimination and LawIn a concise, seven-page decision, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of a Muslim woman, Samantha Elauf, denied employment by clothing retailer Abercrombie & Fitch (“Abercrombie”) after wearing a headscarf to her interview. The plaintiff was denied employment because her headscarf violated Abercrombie’s “Look Policy” which described the image Abercrombie sought to project within its stores.

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By Amy Blaisdell, Lauren Daming, T. Christopher Bailey on March 26, 2015 at 10:43 AM

5388576411_700edd78b2By a 6-3 majority, the Supreme Court created a potentially new standard by which employers’ accommodations given or denied to pregnant women will be judged under the federal Pregnancy Discrimination Act (“PDA”).

In Young v. UPS, the plaintiff, Peggy Young, was deemed unable to work her part-time driver position once her physician placed her on a 20-pound lifting restriction. Young was placed on an unpaid leave, and returned to work after the birth of her child; however, Young subsequently filed a lawsuit against UPS alleging the company violated the PDA in refusing to accommodate her pregnancy-related lifting restriction and not assigning her to a light duty position. 

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By Amy Blaisdell on December 31, 2014 at 1:21 PM

What is the Illinois Pregnancy Fairness Law?

Pregnancy_Posting_redoEffective January 1, 2015, the Illinois Pregnancy Fairness Law provides workplace protections to all expectant mothers, regardless of an employer’s size. The Illinois Pregnancy Fairness Law amends the Illinois Human Rights Act, adding “pregnancy” as a protected class under state law. “Pregnancy” is defined broadly to mean “pregnancy, childbirth, or other medical or common conditions related to pregnancy or childbirth.” Accordingly, effective 1/1/15, the IHRA prohibits discrimination on the basis of “pregnancy” against applicants and employees and also requires employers to provide accommodations to expectant mothers to enable them to perform the job the job held or sought unless the employer can establishing that doing so would cause an undue hardship on the ordinary operation of the business. The Illinois law also prohibits retaliation against individuals who exercise their right to an accommodation under the law.

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By Marcus Wilbers on March 19, 2014 at 3:48 PM

Football Line of ScrimmageBy now, if you haven’t heard the name “Michael Sam,” you’ve probably been hiding under a rock somewhere. His name was constantly in the headlines of both sports and news media after he publicly announced he is gay. And for good reason. The former Mizzou football player and SEC Defensive Player of the Year could become the first openly gay player in the NFL. As many in the media struggled to find a new angle for the story, some questioned whether Sam’s sexual orientation would hurt his chances of being a high draft pick – or a draft pick at all. Some speculated that NFL teams may pass on Sam because of the real or perceived unrest it could create among his teammates.

Suppose Michael Sam goes undrafted – or in employment law terms – suppose NFL teams refuse to hire him because he is gay. What recourse would he have? 

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By Employment & Labor Practice Group on January 31, 2014 at 10:55 AM

Doctor with medical backgroundIn Muzaffar v. Aurora Health Care Southern Lakes, Inc., 2013 WL 6199233 (E.D. Wis. Nov. 27, 2013), the federal district court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin held that the Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act (“EMTALA”) anti-retaliation provision applied to protect a private, non-employed physician with staff privileges at a hospital from retaliation by the hospital for reporting patient transfers that he believed violated EMTALA.

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By Melanie Renken on July 25, 2013 at 6:56 PM

MotivatingFactor_Update“But for,” “motivating factor,” “contributing factor…” Aren’t they all just different legal phrases that ultimately make an employer liable for discriminatory conduct? Absolutely not—and in its first significant employment decision of this term, the United States Supreme Court, by replacing “motivating factor” with “but for,” has made it more difficult for plaintiffs to prove retaliation under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (“Title VII”).

For those of us who practice employment law in Missouri, it remains all too fresh in our minds that the difference in these standards can be monumental.

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