The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) approved a strategic enforcement plan (SEP) setting the agency's future priorities with a bipartisan vote of 3-1 by the EEOC commissioners on Dec. 17. The approved plan lists six national priorities as focuses of an integrated enforcement effort.
Congress is the author of all the federal antidiscrimination statutes, such as the primary law that prohibits employment discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, or national origin, is Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII).
Both Dallas-area businesses and its workers will be interested to learn that the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has recently been pursuing cases against large corporations with many employees in hopes of deterring discrimination on a grander scale.
American employers know or should know that it is illegal to discriminate against any worker based on their sex, race, color, religion, ethnic origin, age, disability or genetic information. This standard applies to state and federal government agencies as well as businesses in the private sector. But apparently, not all employers, even those in government, strive to follow these rules.
Based on a recent ruling by the Texas Supreme Court, an employee who believes they were fired based on age cannot sue if the worker that replaced them was older. The issue before the Supreme Court involved a 48-year-old secretary who was fired from a South Texas school and replaced by a 51-year-old. The former secretary alleged she was dismissed because of her age and filed an age discrimination suit against the school district.
The multinational petroleum company, BP, and some of its contractors have agreed to pay a $5.4 million settlement in response to a gender bias lawsuit. The sex discrimination claim was filed by a group of women who allege they were denied jobs in the aftermath of the company's 2010 oil spill due to their gender. The class-action suit included women from Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida.
The U.S. Supreme Court has recently agreed to review a case to determine who can be considered a workplace supervisor when it comes to federal employment discrimination claims. The Dallas area is home to many federal workers who will be interested to learn how the court's ruling could impact future discrimination lawsuits.
Every year, the Texas Department of Criminal Justice releases approximately 75,000 inmates from prison back into society. One of the most important steps for an ex-offender to take upon release is to find lawful and stable employment. Not only are former offenders expected to become contributing members of society, they must find the financial means to support themselves. Sadly, many try and fail, ending up homeless and destitute on the streets, only to reoffend and wind up back in prison.
In the workplace, seniority should garner respect, not ridicule. But for eight Dallas and Fort Worth, Texas, dockworkers, age made them targets for employment discrimination. Each man was 50 or older when fired from his job in 2007. Some of the dockworkers had been employed with the freight company for more than 20 years.