Employment Law This Week®: NYC’s #MeToo Legislation, Title VII & Gender Identity, False Claims Act Lawsuit, Flu Shot Policy

by Epstein Becker & Green
We invite you to view Employment Law This Week® - a weekly rundown of the latest news in the field, brought to you by Epstein Becker Green. We look at the latest trends, important court decisions, and new developments that could impact your work. Join us every Monday for a new five-minute episode!

This week’s stories include ...

(1) NYC Introduces See more +

We invite you to view Employment Law This Week® - a weekly rundown of the latest news in the field, brought to you by Epstein Becker Green. We look at the latest trends, important court decisions, and new developments that could impact your work. Join us every Monday for a new five-minute episode!

This week’s stories include ...

(1) NYC Introduces Expanded Sexual Harassment Legislation

Our top story: New York City introduces #MeToo legislation. The City Council has introduced a package of bills modifying sexual harassment laws. One bill would require private employers with at least 15 employees to implement annual sexual harassment training. The laws could add significant and costly requirements, particularly for smaller businesses. Ian Carleton Schaefer, from Epstein Becker Green, has more:

“First, the law would mandate that private-sector employers here in New York City who have 15 or more employees conduct annual anti-harassment training for the entirety of their workforce, commencing in September of 2018. Second, the law would expand coverage of the New York City Human Rights Law to smaller employers, to employers who have fewer than four employees. And, finally, the law would lengthen the statute of limitations period, the time at which people can bring forward claims of harassment, which is currently at one year, to a period of three years. This legislation, which is actually a package of 11 different bills, which collectively is known as the Stop Sexual Harassment in New York City Act, would have a profound impact on nearly every single private-sector employer here in New York City, which is approximately 270,000 private-sector employers.”

(2) Sixth Circuit: Title VII Covers Gender Identity

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit rules that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (“Title VII”) covers gender identity. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) sued a Michigan funeral home for firing its director after learning that she planned to transition from male to female. The employer claimed protection under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act. The federal district court agreed, but a panel for the Sixth Circuit found that firing the plaintiff due to her transgender status was unlawful discrimination on the basis of her sex. The court also held that enforcing Title VII did not "substantially" burden the employer’s religious exercise. This is the second federal appellate court in recent weeks to have sided with the EEOC’s interpretation of “sex” under Title VII.

(3) Nurse Can Pursue False Claims Act Suit

The Sixth Circuit ruled that a nurse who claims that she quit her job rather than participate in fraud can proceed with her False Claims Act lawsuit alleging constructive discharge. The district court dismissed her suit, holding that such a claim requires the employer to have a “specific intention” to cause the employee to quit. The Sixth Circuit reversed and concluded that an employer’s intent can support a constructive discharge claim if it can reasonably foresee that the plaintiff might be forced to resign as a consequence of its actions.

(4) DOJ Sues Wisconsin County for Flu Shot Policy

A nursing assistant got sick over a county flu shot policy. An employee at a Wisconsin county nursing home claims that she was forced to get a flu shot despite her religious objections. The county policy required a written statement from a clergy member in order to get a religious exemption. The employee was not affiliated with a church and provided a letter she'd written herself. She was forced to get the shot to avoid termination. After she filed an EEOC complaint, the agency referred the case to the Justice Department, which has now filed a Title VII suit claiming that the county’s policy fails to reasonably accommodate religious beliefs.

(5) Tip of the Week

Russ Ebersole, General Manager for King Cole Audio Visual Service, shares some advice for small employers on keeping up and complying with employment laws in the current environment:

“In 2017, countless new employment laws were enacted in New York State, California, Illinois, and many other jurisdictions. These include wage and hour, family leave and sick time policies, scheduling requirements, tax levies, and more. Small businesses are not exempt, and keeping abreast of these changes can be a daunting task. We must become familiar with these laws of regulations, and we must also develop policies and procedures for proper implementation. Failure to comply can be costly. So, how do we stay on top of it all? Review the advisories and other resources sent by outside counsel, like Epstein Becker & Green. Seek additional resources, such as state and local government websites. Sign up for their mailing list so you receive timely updates directly from the source."

Watch the show and sign up for weekly notifications: EmploymentLawThisWeek.com See less -


Other MultiMedia by Epstein Becker & Green

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

© Epstein Becker & Green | Attorney Advertising

Written by:

Epstein Becker & Green

Epstein Becker & Green on:

Readers' Choice 2017
Reporters on Deadline

"My best business intelligence, in one easy email…"

Your first step to building a free, personalized, morning email brief covering pertinent authors and topics on JD Supra:
Sign up using*

Already signed up? Log in here

*By using the service, you signify your acceptance of JD Supra's Privacy Policy.
Custom Email Digest
Privacy Policy (Updated: October 8, 2015):

JD Supra provides users with access to its legal industry publishing services (the "Service") through its website (the "Website") as well as through other sources. Our policies with regard to data collection and use of personal information of users of the Service, regardless of the manner in which users access the Service, and visitors to the Website are set forth in this statement ("Policy"). By using the Service, you signify your acceptance of this Policy.

Information Collection and Use by JD Supra

JD Supra collects users' names, companies, titles, e-mail address and industry. JD Supra also tracks the pages that users visit, logs IP addresses and aggregates non-personally identifiable user data and browser type. This data is gathered using cookies and other technologies.

The information and data collected is used to authenticate users and to send notifications relating to the Service, including email alerts to which users have subscribed; to manage the Service and Website, to improve the Service and to customize the user's experience. This information is also provided to the authors of the content to give them insight into their readership and help them to improve their content, so that it is most useful for our users.

JD Supra does not sell, rent or otherwise provide your details to third parties, other than to the authors of the content on JD Supra.

If you prefer not to enable cookies, you may change your browser settings to disable cookies; however, please note that rejecting cookies while visiting the Website may result in certain parts of the Website not operating correctly or as efficiently as if cookies were allowed.

Email Choice/Opt-out

Users who opt in to receive emails may choose to no longer receive e-mail updates and newsletters by selecting the "opt-out of future email" option in the email they receive from JD Supra or in their JD Supra account management screen.


JD Supra takes reasonable precautions to insure that user information is kept private. We restrict access to user information to those individuals who reasonably need access to perform their job functions, such as our third party email service, customer service personnel and technical staff. However, please note that no method of transmitting or storing data is completely secure and we cannot guarantee the security of user information. Unauthorized entry or use, hardware or software failure, and other factors may compromise the security of user information at any time.

If you have reason to believe that your interaction with us is no longer secure, you must immediately notify us of the problem by contacting us at info@jdsupra.com. In the unlikely event that we believe that the security of your user information in our possession or control may have been compromised, we may seek to notify you of that development and, if so, will endeavor to do so as promptly as practicable under the circumstances.

Sharing and Disclosure of Information JD Supra Collects

Except as otherwise described in this privacy statement, JD Supra will not disclose personal information to any third party unless we believe that disclosure is necessary to: (1) comply with applicable laws; (2) respond to governmental inquiries or requests; (3) comply with valid legal process; (4) protect the rights, privacy, safety or property of JD Supra, users of the Service, Website visitors or the public; (5) permit us to pursue available remedies or limit the damages that we may sustain; and (6) enforce our Terms & Conditions of Use.

In the event there is a change in the corporate structure of JD Supra such as, but not limited to, merger, consolidation, sale, liquidation or transfer of substantial assets, JD Supra may, in its sole discretion, transfer, sell or assign information collected on and through the Service to one or more affiliated or unaffiliated third parties.

Links to Other Websites

This Website and the Service may contain links to other websites. The operator of such other websites may collect information about you, including through cookies or other technologies. If you are using the Service through the Website and link to another site, you will leave the Website and this Policy will not apply to your use of and activity on those other sites. We encourage you to read the legal notices posted on those sites, including their privacy policies. We shall have no responsibility or liability for your visitation to, and the data collection and use practices of, such other sites. This Policy applies solely to the information collected in connection with your use of this Website and does not apply to any practices conducted offline or in connection with any other websites.

Changes in Our Privacy Policy

We reserve the right to change this Policy at any time. Please refer to the date at the top of this page to determine when this Policy was last revised. Any changes to our privacy policy will become effective upon posting of the revised policy on the Website. By continuing to use the Service or Website following such changes, you will be deemed to have agreed to such changes. If you do not agree with the terms of this Policy, as it may be amended from time to time, in whole or part, please do not continue using the Service or the Website.

Contacting JD Supra

If you have any questions about this privacy statement, the practices of this site, your dealings with this Web site, or if you would like to change any of the information you have provided to us, please contact us at: info@jdsupra.com.

- hide
*With LinkedIn, you don't need to create a separate login to manage your free JD Supra account, and we can make suggestions based on your needs and interests. We will not post anything on LinkedIn in your name. Or, sign up using your email address.