Five Reminders for Employers (Re)Considering COVID-19 Vaccine Mandates

Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, I’ve spent substantial time discussing workplace vaccine mandates with employers. Even before vaccines were available, employers were interested in mandates as a tool to ensure safe working conditions. But even as recently as a month ago, many employers outside of healthcare settings continued to feel uncomfortable about the …read more »

A Primer on Legal Protections for LGBT Employees: Past, Present, and Future (Part 3)

This is the third and final installment in a series examining legal protections for gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender employees, written in anticipation of the U.S. Supreme Court’s upcoming decision on whether Title VII’s protections are broad enough to forbid discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. Part 1 of this series examined the …read more »

A Cautionary Tale: The Importance of a Thorough and Thoughtful Investigation in the #MeToo Era

Over the last two years, my law partners and I have given a number of presentations on the #MeToo movement. Inevitably, there is always a question about where the law stands on the due process rights of the accused. Generally speaking, Title VII does not give employees accused of sexual harassment any per se due …read more »

A Primer on Legal Protections for LGBT Employees: Past, Present, and Future (Part 2)

This is the second installment in a three-part series examining legal protections for gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender employees, written in anticipation of the U.S. Supreme Court’s likely upcoming decision on whether Title VII’s protections are broad enough to forbid discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. Part 1 of this series examined the …read more »

Supreme Court Cautions Employers Not to Delay Asserting Failure to Exhaust Administrative Remedies Defense in Title VII Cases

Most federal laws prohibiting discrimination and retaliation, such as Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (“Title VII”), require plaintiffs to first file an administrative charge alleging discrimination or retaliation with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) or the state-agency equivalent before they may file a lawsuit alleging such discrimination or retaliation.  If …read more »

A Primer on Legal Protections for LGBT Employees: Past, Present, and Future (Part 1)

Earlier this year, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to consider a trio of cases presenting the question of whether Title VII’s protections are broad enough to forbid discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. The cases will be argued in the fall, with decisions likely issued by June 2020. Until then, employers …read more »

What Employers Need to Know about Hair Discrimination

Most employers maintain dress codes and grooming policies. And most of these policies dictate that employees must wear “professional” or “business-appropriate” hairstyles. Some go a step further, prohibiting “extreme” or “distracting” coiffures. Such policies, so long as enforced in an even-handed way, have not traditionally been viewed as presenting significant legal risk. But over the …read more »

Transgender Rights Under the Trump Administration

Attorney General Jeff Sessions recently advised United States Attorneys across the country that the Department of Justice (DOJ) is reversing its prior position that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 – which prohibits gender discrimination in the workplace, among other things – protects transgender workers from discrimination.  This is a significant change …read more »