Robin E. Shea

Robin E. Shea

Constangy, Brooks, Smith & Prophete, LLP

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Latest Posts › Discrimination


UNDER THE BUS: Feds’ New Focus On Individual Wrongdoers Has Implications For Employers

The U.S. Department of Justice has recently issued a memorandum entitled “Individual Accountability for Corporate Wrongdoing.” According to the Memorandum, companies involved in federal criminal and civil investigations will...more

9/25/2015 - C-Suite Executives Cooperation Corporate Misconduct Criminal Prosecution Discrimination DOJ Employment Policies Government Investigations Protected Activity Retaliation Whistleblower Protection Policies Whistleblowers

What’s Your Two Cents? Employment Law In The News

I’ve been vacationing by the shores of Gitche-Gumee this week, so I’m trying to give myself a little blog-cation as well. Here are some entertaining and controversial legal or employment-related developments from the news...more

9/21/2015 - Attorney's Fees Colleges Discrimination E-Signatures Federal Contractors Harassment Human Resources Professionals Kleiner Perkins Caufield Mental Health NLRB OFCCP OSHA Pay Transparency Retaliation Sex Discrimination Social Networks Technology Sector UK

Can An Employee Be Fired For Having Too Many Kids?

Yahoo’s CEO Marissa Mayer announced this week that she is expecting twin girls, and Yahoo’s stock reportedly took an immediate dive. (H8rs!) Mayer said that she plans to take only two weeks off, and she can probably manage...more

9/7/2015 - Discrimination Hiring & Firing Popular Sex Discrimination Title VII Yahoo!

How Much, Er, Discovery Is Allowed In A Transgender Lawsuit?

Well, this should be interesting. As I’ve reported before, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has sued a funeral home chain in the Detroit area for terminating Aimee Stephens, a transgendered woman, because she...more

7/31/2015 - Discovery Discrimination EEOC Gender Discrimination Gender Identity Transgender Wrongful Termination

A First Look at the Workplace Implications of Same-Sex Marriage Equality

We asked attorneys writing on JD Supra to share with us their initial thoughts on the implications of the U.S. Supreme Court's Obergefell decision in favor of same-sex marriage equaliy, especially with the regard to the...more

6/26/2015 - Corporate Counsel Discrimination DOMA First Glance Marriage Equality Obergefell v. Hodges Same-Sex Marriage SCOTUS Sexual Orientation Discrimination US v Windsor Young Lawyers

Less Alarming Than It Sounds: Implications of the Religious Accommodation Decision in 'EEOC v. Abercrombie'

First Glance perspective by attorney Robin Shea of the Supreme Court's recent Religious Accommodation decision in EEOC v. Abercrombie. Spoiler alert: more alarming than it sounds....more

6/2/2015 - Corporate Counsel Discrimination EEOC EEOC v Abercrombie First Glance Hiring & Firing Popular Religious Accommodation Religious Discrimination SCOTUS Title VII

Probability, Manipulation, And Random Drug Testing

Many employers — particularly, those in the transportation industry — use third party vendors to do the random selections for federally mandated drug and alcohol tests. I think it’s a great idea, because it prevents employees...more

5/22/2015 - Discrimination Drug Testing Employment Policies Third-Party Service Provider

EEOC Rolls Out “Digital Charge” Program For Private Employers

The EEOC began use of a new “Digital Charge” pilot program last Friday in the Charlotte, North Carolina, and San Francisco, California, field offices for employment discrimination charges filed against non-federal employers....more

5/5/2015 - Discrimination EEOC

What’s Your Workplace Retaliation IQ?

It’s been a while since we’ve had an employment law quiz, so let’s do it! This one is on retaliation. As always, the answers will be provided after each question — you have our “no-pressure” guarantee....more

3/16/2015 - ADA Adverse Employment Action Burden of Proof Discrimination EEOC Free Speech NLRA Protected Concerted Activity Race Discrimination Retaliation Reverse Discrimination Title VII

Employers, Don’t Be Caught In The “Bogus RIF” Trap!

I was disappointed earlier this week to see a consultant quoted in an otherwise good article in the Wall Street Journal – “Employee Theft Often Leads Small Firms to Make Bad Choices” — as advising the “bogus RIF” strategy...more

1/30/2015 - Discrimination EEOC Employer Liability Issues Involuntary Reduction in Force Termination Theft

Christmas Won’t Be Merry For These Employers!

Oh, you better watch out! A lot of employers have been naughty. I checked the court dockets, and would you believe all of these employment lawsuits filed in the week before Christmas! ...more

12/22/2014 - ADA Adverse Employment Action Breach of Contract Discrimination Employer Liability Issues Harassment PDA Retaliation Wage and Hour

Racial Talk At Work? Beware Of Reverse Discrimination.

When I do harassment training, I ask my audiences whether they think employers should ban the “N” word even when it’s used by African-Americans among themselves. In my experience, the African-Americans in the audience have...more

11/3/2014 - Discrimination Harassment Race Discrimination Racial Discrimination Training

An Employer Should Never Ask About Disability Or Religion. Except When It Should.

Everybody knows that an employer should never, ever, ever ask an applicant about religion or disability until after a conditional offer of employment has been made. And maybe not even then. Right?...more

10/6/2014 - Abercrombie & Fitch ADA Disability Discrimination Discrimination EEOC Employer Liability Issues Hiring & Firing Job Applicants Religious Discrimination SCOTUS Screening Procedures

BREAKING: EEOC files first transgender suits against private employers

Bloomberg BNA reports this afternoon that the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission filed two transgender discrimination lawsuits yesterday, the agency’s first ever against private-sector employers. One is against a...more

9/29/2014 - Discrimination EEOC Employer Liability Issues Enforcement Actions Funeral Homes Healthcare Facilities Title VII Transgender

Breaking: OFCCP Issues Directive On Gender-Identity Discrimination

The Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs has issued a new directive on gender-identity discrimination, consistent with President Obama’s recent amendment to Executive Order 11246. ...more

8/20/2014 - Compliance Discrimination Employee Rights Executive Orders Federal Contractors Gender Identity OFCCP

You can’t fix stupid: Employment law edition

Homo sapiens is fired for teaching about homophones (and his sister is a known thespian rumored to have dramaturgical aspirations). A teacher at a private language school in Utah says that he was fired by the director for...more

8/1/2014 - Discrimination Employer Liability Issues Racial Discrimination Retaliation

Sex Stereotyping, Sexual Orientation Discrimination, And Federal Law – Crazy-Mixed-Up Right Now

The Employment Non-Discrimination Act is dead again, so there isn’t a federal law prohibiting discrimination based on sexual orientation. Is there any federal law on same-sex harassment or discrimination? If so, what is it?...more

7/25/2014 - Discrimination Employer Liability Issues ENDA Harassment Hiring & Firing Sex Discrimination Sexual Orientation Discrimination Title VII

Obama’s LGBT Executive Order Raises More Questions Than It Answers

More than two years after expressly declining to do so, this past Monday, President Obama signed an Executive Order prohibiting federal contractors from discriminating against individuals on the basis of sexual orientation or...more

7/23/2014 - Barack Obama Discrimination DOL Employer Liability Issues Executive Orders Federal Contractors Federal Employees LGBT Sexual Orientation Discrimination

Obama Signs LGBT Discrimination, Affirmative Action Order

This morning President Obama signed an Executive Order amending the 1965 Executive Order 11246. President Obama’s EO prohibits discrimination and requires affirmative action by federal contractors based on sexual orientation...more

7/22/2014 - Discrimination Executive Orders Gender Identity Sexual Orientation Discrimination

EEOC Issues Guidance On Pregnancy Discrimination And Accommodation

I plan to write more about this later in the week, but today the EEOC issued an Enforcement Guidance, Q&A, and Fact Sheet on pregnancy discrimination and accommodation. Much of the Guidance reiterated the law as we had always...more

7/15/2014 - Discrimination EEOC Employer Liability Issues Enforcement Guidance Pregnancy Discrimination Reasonable Accommodation

Employment Law Believe It Or Not!

I thought only elephants had two-year pregnancies. As I’ve discussed here before, “pregnancy” for purposes of the federal Pregnancy Discrimination Act includes a lot of things besides the actual nine months of physical...more

7/11/2014 - Corporate Counsel Discrimination EEOC Employee Rights Employer Liability Issues Hiring & Firing Marijuana Pregnancy Discrimination Race Discrimination

Stupid “discrimination” complaints: How should an employer handle?

A reader, who has asked to remain anonymous, suggested that I write about employees who make “stupid” complaints about discrimination, harassment, or other allegedly unlawful treatment. The following is a fictionalized...more

5/27/2014 - Discrimination Employer Liability Issues

Employers Shouldn't Be Too Excited About That Pregnancy Decision . . . And More From The Price Is Right

Is this new UPS pregnancy discrimination decision really such great news for employers? HINT: Check the dates!!! The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit* held this week that there is no "reasonable...more

1/14/2013 - ADA ADAAA Discrimination Pregnancy Reasonable Accommodation UPS

Post-Apocalypse (Well, Post-Vacation, Anyway) Employment Law Roundup

Happy new year, everybody! Although I've been on vacation, the news never sleeps, and the Mayans were wrong. Accordingly, I have a few items to catch you up on....more

1/3/2013 - Breastfeeding Discrimination DOL Email FLSA Hiring & Firing Marital Communications Privilege Melissa Nelson Nelson v Knight Sex Discrimination Termination

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