Administrative Agency Civil Rights Labor & Employment

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NLRB Rules that Racism is a Protected Activity

Although no one reading this article would disagree with the premise that employers cannot and should not tolerate bigotry from anyone in their workforce, the NLRB apparently thinks otherwise. In a troubling decision handed...more

Unfortunately, Offensive Racial Comments Don’t Always Get You Fired (At Least Under Labor Law)

Under the National Labor Relations Act, certain union activities are considered “protected.” That is, employees engaging in union activity, or union representatives carrying out their duties in the context of grievance...more

Administrative Closing Of Employment Discrimination Case Subject To Arbitration Agreement Bars Appellate Review

In Walker v. TA Operating, LLC et. al., Case No. 14-41046 (5th Cir. May 22, 2015), the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals dismissed an appeal of an employment discrimination case subject to an arbitration agreement due to lack of...more

Case Alert: Employee Fairly Dismissed for Contacting the Information Commissioner's Office Against Instructions

What happened? In Barton v Royal Borough of Greenwich, the Employment Appeal Tribunal (the "EAT") decided that an employee was fairly dismissed for misconduct after failing to adhere to his employer's instructions not to...more

Employee Allowed to Pursue Claim Despite Failure to Follow Rules

One of the first things a savvy employer or employer's attorney may do upon receipt of a claim, charge, or complaint, is look for deficiencies which may serve as a bar to suit. ...more

Sixth Circuit Rejects “Definitively, Specifically” Standard for SarbOx Whistleblower Claims

The Sixth Circuit this week rejected the “definitively and specifically” standard that had required a Sarbanes-Oxley whistleblower’s “reasonable belief” to closely track each element of the legal cause of action for the fraud...more

Uber’s ADA Conundrum

When you think of Uber (or similar companies like Lyft and Sidecar) you probably think of a transportation company. You request a ride on the company’s app and a driver (in his own vehicle) picks you up. The nature of the...more

SCOTUS Jurisdiction Watch: Exhaustion of EEOC Administrative Remedies

On May 28, 2015, the United States Supreme Court is scheduled to meet and decide whether to grant or deny certiorari in Duble v. FedEx Ground Package System Inc., Supreme Court Case No. 14-1028. Petitioner, Duble, seeks...more

Bill 42: Towards a central portal in labour and employment

On April 15, 2015, the Minister of Labour, Employment and Social Solidarity tabled Bill 42 in the Québec National Assembly. The Bill is titled, An Act to group the Commission de l'équité salariale, the Commission des normes...more

OSHA Publishes New Whistleblower Investigations Manual

OSHA released an updated version of its Whistleblower Investigations Manual (CPL 02-03-005) on May 21, 2015–the first update since September 2011. The manual now reflects procedures for investigating MAP-21 whistleblower...more

EEOC Retains Subpoena Power Even after Complainants' Private Lawsuit was Dismissed

Employers beware: in a shocking decision out of the Eastern District of Wisconsin, a court has allowed the EEOC to engage in a fishing expedition to gather more evidence against a company which had already successfully...more

Transgender Complaints on the Rise: What Should Employers Do?

The President, the EEOC and the Justice Department have announced that gender identity discrimination is prohibited sex discrimination under Title VII. Since these declarations, the number of lawsuits alleging gender identity...more

Expanded Whistleblower Protections Impact Confidentiality Policies and Agreements

All employers should review their confidentiality policies and agreements to ensure adequate protections for whistleblowers in the wake of recent actions by both the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) and the National...more

EEOC Takes On Transgender Discrimination Under Title VII

On April 21, 2014, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan ruled that the EEOC may proceed with sex discrimination claims on behalf of a transgender plaintiff. This litigation is one of two actions filed...more

EEOC Will Now Process Sexual Orientation Discrimination Claims

On February 3rd, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission released an internal memorandum stating that the EEOC will now process and investigate claims of discrimination based on sexual orientation, transgender status, and...more

DOJ Pursuing Therapy Providers Under the FCA

As most recently spotlighted by the Department of Justice’s intervention in whistleblower claims against ManorCare, DOJ is increasing its enforcement of the False Claims Act (FCA) against therapy providers. In particular, DOJ...more

Whistle While You Work: SEC Announces First Retaliation Whistleblower Award

On June 16, 2014, the SEC issued its first-ever charge of whistleblower retaliation under section 922 of the Dodd-Frank Act, charging a hedge fund advisor and its owner with “engaging in prohibited principal transactions and...more

Dodd-Frank of the North? Incentive-Based Whistleblower Program Coming to Canada

It will be of significant interest to US corporations that make securities filings with the Ontario Securities Commissions (“OSC”), that on February 3, 2015, the OSC published “Staff Consultation Paper 15-401”, which sets out...more

EEOC Takes First Steps in Digital Charge System

ACT Digital Pilot Program Allows Online Interaction With Employers - WASHINGTON - The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) announced today that 11 of its 53 offices will begin a pilot program called ACT...more

WSJ Report On Delayed SEC Whistleblower Bounty Awards

A Wall Street Journal article (subscription required) dated May 4, 2015 reports that a backlog of tips received by the SEC Office of the Whistleblower as part of its bounty program has resulted in a delay in paying awards to...more

The Cost of Buying Silence – Non-disclosure Provisions Run Afoul of Federal Agencies

There’s an inherent tension in requiring an employee to sign an agreement restricting his or her ability to discuss activity in the workplace. On one hand, employers with confidential business practices and trade secrets need...more

SEC Announces a Maximum Whistleblower Award to an Employee Who Faced Employment Retaliation as a Consequence of Reporting...

In June of last year, Paradigm Capital Management agreed to pay the SEC nearly $2 million to settle allegations that it violated the Dodd-Frank Act’s conflict-of-interest rules and unlawfully retaliated against the...more

OSHA’s Recent Guidance on Whistleblower Retaliation Investigations

The Directorate of Whistleblower Protection Programs recently issued a guidance memorandum titled “Clarification of the Investigative Standard for OSHA Whistleblower Investigations,” for the apparent purpose of clarifying the...more

Supreme Court Requires Narrow Proof of EEOC Conciliation Efforts

On Wednesday, a unanimous U.S. Supreme Court agreed that federal courts have authority to review the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s attempts to conciliate discrimination charges when the agency concludes that the...more

Supreme Court Victory For Employers In Mach Mining v. EEOC

On April 29, 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its long-awaited decision in Mach as1859[1]Mining, LLC v. EEOC, No. 13-1019 (U.S. 2015), and concluded, in a unanimous opinion authored by Justice Kagan, that federal courts...more

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