Fundamentals of Employment Law OS652 HRM Fisher Sept. 2, 2004.
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Fundamentals of Employment Law OS652 HRM Fisher Sept. 2, 2004
Agenda Review key laws affecting HR Why are these laws necessary? Discuss examples you found
Fairness in the workplace Providing equal employment opportunity is all about fairness Many different ways of thinking about fairness, organizational justice – Equity vs. equality – Distributive vs. procedural – Societal level vs. individual level
Discussion questions What types of fairness did your examples address? Should organizations be proactive or reactive in relation to employment law?
Types of discrimination Disparate treatment – Procedural justice: Are people treated the same in employment decisions? – Exception: BFOQs Disparate impact – Distributive justice: Do our policies and procedures have the same impact on different groups? – Four-fifths rule (will address more when we talk about selection)
Defending Adverse Impact Charges Business necessity – Examples? BFOQ Validation evidence – Still requires demonstration that there is not another valid way to select employees that does not result in adverse impact
Civil Rights Act (Title VII) Employers may not discriminate on the basis of race, color, sex, religion, or national origin – Sexual orientation is not included, but employers are allowed to set policies that are more inclusive than the federal law Applies to employers with 15 or more employees, employment agencies, and labor unions
Americans with Disabilities Act Protects against discrimination of individuals with disabilities Applies to employers with 15 or more employees Requires “ reasonable accommodation ” Key sticking point has been definition of disability – Toyota v. Williams (2002)
Family and Medical Leave Act Provides for 12 weeks unpaid leave for pregnancy, illness, or family illness Employer must provide position of similar responsibility upon return – What exactly does this mean? Applies to organizations with 50 or more employees Issues with FMLA – Proof of condition – Defining family – Notification of leave
California: First Paid Family Leave Law in the US Family Temporary Disability Insurance (FTDI) Provides 55% of pay for up to six weeks annually Funded by additional payroll taxes Projected benefits to employees – Can actually take leave – Decrease turnover, increase commitment Why are employers concerned about this?
Other important legislation Equal Pay Act Age Discrimination Act Pregnancy Discrimination Act Civil Rights Act of 1991
EEOC Established by the Civil Rights Act Handles complaints and grievances – Investigates charges – Seeks voluntary resolution – Issues Right-to-Sue or brings suit in federal court Has right to sue in its own name (EEOC v. Waffle House) Remediation options – Monetary damages – Corrective actions (EEOC v. WalMart)
Affirmative Action Contractors to the federal government (at least 50 employees, more than $50,000 in contracts) must have AAPs – Utilization analysis – Goals and timetables (but not quotas) – Action steps But, organizations cannot hire on the basis of race, sex, and so on. How can both of these requirements be met?
Harassment Sexual harassment is a form of sex discrimination (EEOC, 1980) – Actions held as condition of employment or that create a hostile or offensive working environment Hard to clearly define Employer liability – Failure to take corrective action – Failure to have/use reporting procedures – Zero tolerance policy can provide protection
Examples of religious discrimination cases: Who is right? Southwestern Savings & Loan Assn – Employer held religious talks and prayers at the end of staff meetings – Employees were required to attend; employee quit and then sued for harassment Rising Star telecommunications company – Largely Muslim-run; “ unclean meat ” not allowed in workplace – Catholic woman fired for eating pork at work
Legal Issues for Multinational Corporations Generally, US laws only apply within borders Cannot require companies to violate laws of the host country CRA of 1991 applies to US citizens employed by US-owned or controlled companies, even when working in a foreign country – Hard to enforce Source: Dessler, A Framework for Human Resource Management, 3 rd edition.
For next class Discuss some laws, examples in greater detail Look at more issues involving employee rights – Read pages 549-560