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Recent Blog Posts

Discriminating Against Disabled Californians in the Workplace

In 2012, there were 19,839 employment cases with the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH), the state agency mandated to combat illegal discrimination in employment and housing. Of the total cases, 13,452 were complaints of disability discrimination. What is the meaning of disability? The Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) broadly covers mental… Read More »

Philosophical Sexual Harassment

Gender discrimination against women in the field of philosophy is one point of concern. Women comprise less than 20 percent of university philosophy faculty members — less than in any other humanities field. Women also contribute a fraction of citations in leading scholarly publications. Sexual harassment in philosophy is of greater concern. The resignation of… Read More »

Employer Responsibility and Negligent Hiring Claims

Negligent hiring is an action in torts brought by individuals who claim that they have been hurt by an employee and that the employee’s tendency for violence or untrustworthiness was known to or should have been known to the employer. The tort of negligent hiring is a notable exception to the general principle that a… Read More »

The Biggest Sexual Harassment Cases and Settlements

Sexual harassment became a household term in 1991 during the confirmation hearings of Justice Clarence Thomas. The nation watched live coverage as Anita Hill, Justice Thomas’ former colleague, detailed how he sexually harassed her and other female colleagues. One year later, the number of sexual harassment cases increased by 50 percent. Today, federal and state… Read More »

U.S. Supreme Court Restricts Employment Discrimination Retaliation Claims

In a recent decision, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center v. Nassar, the U.S. Supreme Court made it more difficult for plaintiffs claiming retaliation to make employment discrimination claims. The court ruled that plaintiffs must prove that retaliation was the determinative factor in an adverse employment action, and not just a motivating factor as had… Read More »

Is This the Finale for the Disparate Impact Analysis?

The U.S. Supreme Court’s hearing of Mt. Holly Gardens Citizens in Action v. Mt. Holly marks the beginning of the assault on the application of the disparate impact analysis to discrimination claims. Disparate impact is one method of proving discrimination by governments, lenders and employers through the statistical effect of a policy without showing any… Read More »

Deadline for Sexual Harassment Prevention Training Looming

A date for the diary of business owners and managers in California: 31st December 2013. California anti-harassment laws require that all employers of 50 people or more hold anti-sexual harassment training and education for all employees in supervisory roles every two years. The end of this year will be the end of a two year… Read More »

It’s All About the Type of Workplace

The Court of Appeals has ruled in favor of a legal secretary that complained about sexual harassment at the Century City law firm that employed her. Jeri Elster filed suit after being sent numerous emails containing pornographic material and references of a sexual nature from the attorneys she was assigned to work for at Finestone… Read More »

Record Producer Accused of Sexual Harassment of Interns

Two former employees of a Los Angeles-based record label have sued their former employer on multiple grounds, including sexual harassment and wrongful termination. Tomas Cookman, founder and CEO of music label Nacional Records, is accused of frequently making sexually suggestive remarks to Claudia Becerra and Montserrat Perez, sending them emails containing pornographic images, making sexual… Read More »

Bob Filner, the Rule of Law and Due Process

Bob Filner, Mayor of San Diego, has been the subject of recent allegations that he sexually harassed numerous female employees and made unwanted sexual advances towards other women. Filner, who forged a reputation throughout his political career for championing the rights of women and minorities, denies the allegations and continues to hold office despite the… Read More »