Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 C. W. Von Bergen Southeastern Oklahoma State University December 10, 2009
Title VII of the CRA of 1964 Training for Bryan County Sheriff’s Office (BCSO) Why training now? Some U.S. history regarding equal opportunity Title VII of the CRA of 1964 Sex and pregnancy discrimination Bryan County Sheriff’s Office Sex and Pregnancy Anti-Discrimination Policy Examination (90% minimum)
Why Training Now? As part of a consent degree between United States and the Bryan County Sheriff’s Department regarding a matter of employment discrimination based on sex and pregnancy You will become familiar with: – Title VII’s prohibition on employment discrimination based on sex and pregnancy – departmental policies prohibiting employment discrimination based on sex and pregnancy – departmental policies and procedures for determining whether to place a pregnant employee on limited or light duty – departmental policies and procedures for submitting complaints of employment discrimination based on sex and pregnancy
Employment Rights: Some Values, Some History, and Some Laws Key American Values Civil Rights History The Legal System in the U.S.
Some Key American Values Choice Individual freedoms and rights Optimism Equality Meritocracy—decisions made based upon talent, ability, and competence as demonstrated by past actions or by fair competition (MERIT).
Discrimination Discrimination simply means making distinctions; distinctions among people or classes in the workplace Lawful discrimination based on merit and job- related factors in areas like: – who should get promoted – who should receive a pay increase or bonus – who will be laid off – other workplace activities
Civil Rights History Our Country’s Founding Civil War Civil Rights Movement (1960s) – Race – Sex/Gender 1960s+ Struggles – Veterans – Older Americans – Disabilities – Sexual orientation
U.S. Legal System (equal opportunity) Federal Level – The Constitution and Amendments – The legislative branch – The judicial branch – The executive branch Department of Labor Department of Justice Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) State Level Oklahoma Human Rights Commission
Cleveland Board of Ed. v. Lafleur, 414 U.S. 632 (1974) Pregnant public school teachers challenged the constitutionality of mandatory maternity leave rules of the Cleveland, Ohio and Chesterfield County, Virginia School Boards. The Cleveland school board required a pregnant school teacher to take maternity leave, without pay, for five months before the expected birth of her child. A Virginia county school board imposed a similar four-month leave requirement. There were other arbitrary and mandatory requirements regarding when teachers could return to work.
Cleveland Board of Ed. v. Lafleur, 414 U.S. 632 (1974) cont’d US Supreme Court held: that the mandatory maternity leave rules were unconstitutional under the Due Process Clauses in the 5th and 14th amendments. Essentially, the rules were found to be too arbitrary (fixed dates chosen for no apparent reason) and irrebuttable (having no relation to individual medical conditions and with no way to make exceptions for good reason).
Cleveland Board of Ed. v. Lafleur, 414 U.S. 632 (1974) cont’d Specifically, the Court said: “This Court has long recognized that freedom of personal choice in matters of marriage and family life is one of the liberties protected by the Due Process Clause... By acting to penalize the pregnant teacher for deciding to bear a child, overly restrictive maternity leave regulations can constitute a heavy burden on the exercise of these protected freedoms.”.. “(P)ublic school maternity leave rules directly affect "one of the basic civil rights of man,” “... the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment requires that such rules must not needlessly, arbitrarily, or capriciously impinge upon this vital area of a teacher’s constitutional liberty” (p. 9).
President Johnson Signs the Civil Rights Act of 1964
A Historic Rights Act: The CRA of 1964 Created legal basis for nondiscrimination in – housing (Title [or chapter/section] III) – education (Title IX) – public accommodations (Title II) – federally assisted programs (Title VI) – employment (Title VII) Single most important piece of legislation that has helped to shape and define employment rights is U.S.
The CRA of 1964 –Title VII Amendments to Title VII – Equal Employment Opportunity Act of 1971 – Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978 – Civil Rights Act of 1991 Created EEOC to monitor and enforce compliance with Title VII (have a number of guidelines) Created various protected classes – African Americans – Asian Americans – Indigenous Americans – Women
The Heart of Title VII—Section 703(a) It shall be an unlawful employment practice for an employer— “To fail or refuse to hire or to discharge any individual, or otherwise to discriminate against any individual with respect to his [sic] compensation, terms, conditions, or privileges of employment, because of such individual’s race, color, religion, sex, or national origin; or To limit, segregate, or classify his [sic] employees or applicants for employment in any way which would deprive or tend to deprive any individual of employment opportunities or otherwise adversely affect his [sic] status as an employee, because of such individual’s race, color, religion, sex, or national origin.”
The CRA of 1964: Kinds of Discrimination Disparate treatment: intentionally treating protected groups differently; unequal treatment Retaliation: protecting workers from employers’ threats and other forms of intimidation aimed at discouraging workers from bringing to light acts they believe to be illegal Disparate/adverse impact: applying the same standard to all workers/applicants but that standard affects a protected class member more negatively; unequal consequences or results
Title VII: It is Illegal to Discriminate In hiring and firing personnel compensation, assignment, or classification of employees transfer, promotion, layoff, or recall job advertisements recruitment testing use of company facilities training and apprenticeship programs fringe benefits pay, retirement plans, and disability leave other terms and conditions of employment
Title VII Exceptions employers with less than 15 employees private clubs religious organizations places of employment connected to or near an Indian reservation seniority systems veteran’s preference rights national security reasons job relatedness (e.g., validated test scores, backgrounds) business necessity (e.g., Hooters) Bona fide occupational qualification (BFOQ)
Title VII Addresses Three Key Areas of Sex Discrimination General Sex Discrimination Pregnancy-Based Discrimination Sexual Harassment
General Sex Discrimination Covers Full Scope of Employment Relationship Advertising for available positions and specifying gender preferences. Asking questions on applications that are only asked of one gender. Asking questions in an interview that are only asked of one gender. Requiring one gender to work different hours or job positions for reasons not related to their ability or availability for the job. Disciplining one gender for an act for which another gender is not disciplined. Providing or not providing training for one gender, while doing so for another.
General Sex Discrimination Covers Full Scope of Employment Relationship cont’d Establishing seniority systems specifically designed to give greater seniority to one gender over another. Paying employees different wages based on gender, though the job one employee performs is the same or substantially the same as another. Providing different benefits for one gender than another. Subjecting one gender to different terms or conditions of employment. Terminating the employment of an employee of one gender for reasons that would not serve as the basis for termination for an employee of another gender.
Pregnancy-Related Discrimination Refusing to hire pregnant applicants Terminating an employee on discovering that the worker is pregnant Not providing benefits to pregnant employees on an equal basis with short-term disabilities of other employees. Refusing to allow a pregnant employee to continue to work even though the employee wishes to do so
Pregnancy-Related Discrimination cont’d Eliminating the pregnant employee by moving her to a new job title with the same pay, then eliminating the position in a job restructuring or reduction in force Evaluating the employee as not having performed as well or as much as other employees when the basis for the evaluation is the employer’s own refusal or hesitation to assign equal work to the employee, because the employee is pregnant and the employer feels the need to “lighten” the employee’s load, though the employee has not requested such.
Pregnancy-Related Discrimination cont’d Not providing the employee with lighter duty if needed, when such accommodations are made for employees with other short-term disabilities. Not permitting the pregnant employee to be a part of the normal circle of office culture so she becomes less aware of matters of importance to the office or current projects, resulting in more likelihood that the employee will not be able to effectively compete with those still within the circle. Not providing medical benefits to the husbands of female employees if they provide such benefits to the wives of male employees.
Sexual Harassment This includes practices ranging from direct requests for sexual favors to workplace conditions that create a hostile environment for persons of either gender, including same sex harassment. Recent case: Crowley County (Colorado) Correctional Facility—$1.3 million fine http://www.eeoc.gov/press/10-13-09.html ( beyond the scope of today’s training )
BCSO Sex and Pregnancy Anti- Discrimination Policy Discrimination against any individual with respect to such individual’s employment relationship based on such individual’s sex or pregnancy is prohibited Any categorization of employees that adversely affects their employment relationship because of such individual’s sex or pregnancy is prohibited It is expected that co-workers will treat each other with respect, dignity, and civility at all times Pregnant employees shall be permitted to work as long as they are able to perform their duties.
BCSO Sex and Pregnancy Anti- Discrimination Policy cont’d Workers are responsible for informing their supervisors of any physical condition that would impair their job performance. Any employee who is temporarily disabled (unable to perform assigned duties) will be reassigned to a duty consistent with the employee’s physical ability during the period of disability. Pregnant employees will not be singled out for special procedures to determine their ability to work.
BCSO Sex and Pregnancy Anti- Discrimination Policy cont’d If an employee is temporarily unable to perform her job duties due to pregnancy, she shall be treated the same as any other temporarily disabled employee A pregnant employee voluntarily seeking leave and/or sick pay because of her pregnancy shall be treated the same as any other employee seeking leave and/or sick pay because of any other physical condition Like all short term disabilities, individuals taking pregnancy-related leave must have a medical release to return to work
BCSO Sex and Pregnancy Anti- Discrimination Policy cont’d If any employee has been absent from work as a result of a pregnancy-related condition and then recovers, she shall not be required to remain on leave until the baby’s birth A job will be held open for a pregnancy-related absence for the same length of time as jobs are held open for employees on sick or disability leave Accrual and crediting of seniority, vacation calculation, pay increases, temporary disability benefits, and other considerations for pregnancy-related absences shall be treated the same as any other temporarily disabled employee
Submitting Complaints of Discrimination Submit to Immediate supervisor Sheriff or County Commissioners Oklahoma Human Rights Commission Equal Employment Opportunity Commission Timeframe Within 6 months of alleged act Within 180 days of alleged act Within 300 days of alleged act
Examination No time limit; should take 10-15 minutes to complete Open book; use your notes You must score 90% or greater before you leave
Copy of Supreme Court Ruling in Cleveland Board of Ed. v. Lafleur