Anti-Harassment Policies

News & Analysis as of

More than Just a TV Show: How Bruce Jenner’s Story Sheds Light on the Importance of Workplace Policies for Transgender Employees

Last month in a nationally televised interview, U.S. Olympic icon Bruce Jenner revealed to the world that he is a transgender woman. While the coming out process for the rest of the nearly 700,000 transgender Americans may...more

NLRB General Counsel's Recent Report on Work Rules Tracks Areas to Watch - Employers of Union and Non-Union Work Forces Need to Be...

For the last several years, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB or the "Board") has engaged in a well-publicized expansion of scrutiny for employer work rules and has liberally identified those rules that it believes...more

Sixth Circuit Contradicts New TN Supreme Court Decision Regarding Retaliation Claims

Last month, the Tennessee Supreme Court narrowed the definition of retaliation under state law. Less than one month later, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals (which has jurisdiction over Tennessee, Michigan, Ohio and...more

New Guidance Regarding Employee Handbooks Part Two: Employee Conduct Rules Can Prohibit Insuordination and Harassment But Cannot...

This post is the second in a series providing guidance on federal rules regarding permissible and impermissible employer handbook policies and rules. ...more

NLRB General Counsel Offers Guidance on Employer Policies and Rules

On March 19, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) made public new guidance governing a number of keys areas that have been challenging employers for the last few years. These clarifications could affect employers’...more

The Love Contract – Taking the Romance Out of Office Trysts

If Valentine’s Day leads to many office hookups, then April Fool’s Day can be considered the traditional day of mourning for imploded relationships. HR professionals fear April 2: the annual day of harassment complaints...more

Workplace Harassment is Evolving: Is Your Prevention Program Keeping Pace?

Creating a workplace culture where employees feel safe and respected means designing and implementing a workplace harassment prevention program that adapts to emerging issues. In this presentation: I. The Persistent...more

Workplace Harassment Prevention: Are You Doing Enough?

Do you have a comprehensive workplace harassment prevention program in place? During our recent webinar, “Workplace Harassment is Evolving: Is Your Prevention Program Keeping Pace?,” we asked attendees whether they had a...more

Lessons From the Kleiner Perkins Trial: Stopping Discrimination Against Women

In recent weeks much media attention has been paid to an important case against a well-known Silicon Valley venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield Byers. Since late February, the technology sector venture capitalist...more

California Makes Anti-Bullying Training A Component Of Mandatory Harassment Training

California employers with more than 50 employees must include “abusive conduct” prevention training in their mandatory harassment prevention training. Assembly Bill No. 2053 expanded the scope of training required by...more

Employment Law Reporter – March 2015: A New EEOC Task Force for Strategies to Prevent and Correct Harassment in the Workplace is...

A New EEOC Task Force for Strategies to Prevent and Correct Harassment in the Workplace is Being Created: This is an Opportunity for Employers to Implement Proactive Measures Now that Will Save them Money Later....more

You Take the Good, You Take the Bad: NJ High Court Offers Employers Avenue to Limit Vicarious Liability in Harassment Suits; But...

In Aguas v. State of New Jersey, the New Jersey Supreme Court recently adopted an affirmative defense—available under federal law since 1998—allowing employers to use their anti-harassment policies to limit vicarious...more

Is Summary Judgment Unavailable for Sexual Harassment Claims? The Impact of the Walker v. Mod-U-Kraf Ruling on Sexual Harassment...

In modern employment litigation, the employer’s ultimate goal is to prevail at summary judgment, thereby avoiding the expense of trial and the unpredictability of a jury. A recent decision from the Fourth Circuit Court of...more

Complaint to Managers Below Level of Alleged Harasser Not Effective Use of Company's Policy

In most circumstances, employers are vicariously liable for sexual or other harassment engaged in by their supervisors. Under the Supreme Court’s Faragher/Ellerth defense, employers can sometimes avoid liability for...more

New Jersey Supreme Court Erects New Hurdle for Harassment Plaintiffs To Overcome

Last week, the New Jersey Supreme Court analyzed the impact of an employer’s anti-harassment policy on an employee’s claims of negligence, recklessness and vicarious liability against employers under the New Jersey Law...more

NJ Supreme Court Backs Employer Defense in Supervisor Harassment Suits

The New Jersey Supreme Court recently ruled that an employer may assert an effective and enforced anti-harassment policy as an affirmative defense in cases brought against the employer alleging that a supervisor engaged in...more

Status Updates - January 2015 #3

A Craigslist conviction. The highest court in Massachusetts upheld the conviction under the Bay State’s anti-harassment statute of a couple who posted fake Craigslist advertisements that caused a great deal of trouble for...more

15 For ’15: Employment And Labor Resolutions For The New Year

While the year is still young, here are 15 New Year’s resolutions that employers may want to make: 1. Make sure your “independent contractors” are really independent contractors. ”Independent contractors” are under...more

New Laws and Court Decisions Should Prompt Review of Employee Handbooks for Most Employers

Handbooks in light of several recent legislative actions and judicial decisions. Employers should generally review and update Employee Handbooks as necessary on a yearly basis, but numerous changes will be necessary for most...more

“Super” Anti-Harassment Policy May Create Unanticipated Liability

Ordinarily, employers think of anti-harassment policies as a means of defending themselves against harassment claims rather than a source of liability. However, a recent decision from a U.S. District Court in Connecticut...more

Employer’s Super Anti-Harassment Policy May Increase Its Liability

A federal court in Connecticut recently concluded that a fired employee could have a valid disability harassment claim based on statements prohibiting all harassment contained in the employer’s personnel manual. The company...more

Status Updates - December 2014 #3

Block party. Twitter has revamped its anti-harassment policies to make it easier to report harassment on the network or to block another account. The change follows recent highly-publicized instances of “Twitter harassment,”...more

Employer's "Super Policy" Against Harassment Requires Employer to Protect Employee Beyond That Which is Required by Law

A Costco employee suffered from Tourette's syndrome, and made complaints to management about the way his supervisors and others were treating him. He later filed charges with the Connecticut Human Rights Organization as well...more

EEOC Files Two Ground-Breaking Cases Equating Transgender Discrimination with Sex Discrimination Under Title VII

On September 25, 2014, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) filed two lawsuits on behalf of transgender individuals. These lawsuits, which alleged sex discrimination, are part of the EEOC’s Strategic...more

California Employers Must Now Include Training against "Abusive Conduct" in AB 1825 Sexual Harassment Training for Supervisors

Last week, Governor Brown signed legislation that adds a new component to the required AB 1825 sexual harassment training for supervisors. Starting January 1, 2015, AB 1825 anti-harassment training must also include training...more

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