Pregnancy Discrimination

Pregnancy should be one of the most exciting periods of a woman’s life. Unfortunately, too often women are treated unfavorably at their workplace, because of their pregnancy or medical condition related to the pregnancy. Аs numerous sociological studies show, pregnant women are still at a severe disadvantage in the job market. They are often viewed as less committed or even less competent than other females. When hired (if hired) they are offered lower salaries than their competitors, and at their workplace they could be held to higher standard of performance than other employees. Until the late 1970-s women did not have many remedies to fight against pregnancy discrimination. For instance, […]

What is discrimination in the workplace threshold?

What is discrimination in the workplace threshold?

We know that federal laws prohibit employers from discriminating against their employees. But what is discrimination in the workplace threshold, i.e. when a certain kind of treatment actually becomes discrimination? When one would know that he or she was treated illegally and could seek legal protection against discrimination? Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 made it illegal for employers to discriminate against their employees on the basis of sex, race, color, national origin, and religion. This rule applies to “compensation terms, conditions, or privileges of employment,” i.e. basically to everything related to hiring and firing, compensation and benefits, retirement plans, disability leave, classification of employees, transfer and […]

Can All Employees Be of the Same Ethnic Origin?

Can All Employees Be of the Same Ethnic Origin?

In 1985 The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) brought a suit against a small company providing janitorial and cleaning services in Chicago (EEOC v. Consolidated Service Systems). The owner of the company, a Korean immigrant, was hiring mostly Koreans. He did it by relying on word of mouth rather than traditional means of advertising. The EEOC claimed that the company was discriminating in favor of the persons of Korean origin. Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 explicitly prohibits any discrimination in hiring based on “race, color, religion, sex, or national origin.” The court was looking for any evidence of an intentional discrimination, because the mere fact that […]

Who Are Whistleblowers?

Who Are Whistleblowers?

In the 19th century whistleblowing was literally about blowing a whistle, i.e. like what referee does during sports games like football or basketball. When referee is blowing the whistle it means that the game should stop. As we know it usually happens when a player or players violated the rules of the game. The referee would stop the game and take actions in relation to those who broke the rules. Gradually “whistleblowing” got its contemporary meaning of stopping something illegal by reporting about it to authorities. During the most part of the 20th century the public attitude to whistleblowers was ambivalent. Reporting to authorities was not that widespread and those […]

Obama’s Executive Order on Paid Sick Leave for Federal Contractors

Obama’s Executive Order on Paid Sick Leave for Federal Contractors

On Labor Day September 7, 2015 during his meeting with labor leaders in Boston President Obama signed his Executive Order requiring companies that work under contracts with the federal government to extend a paid sick leave to their employees. Federal contractors’ employees are about 300,000 people. They will get this benefit. But it is still a fraction of our labor market. Most employees in various sectors of the national economy still don’t have it. According to Mr. Obama, right now about 40% of private sector workers, or about 44 million people in the U.S. “don’t have access to paid sick leave.” Under the terms of the Executive Order the employees […]