POLITICAL SUPPORT FOR U.S. WOMEN’S SOCCER TEAM – BUT WILL IT MATTER?

Soccer

Back in March, members of the U.S. Women’s Soccer team filed a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, alleging members of the team are paid less than members of the men’s team, violating the federal Equal Pay Act.  The players argue they are paid almost four times less than their male counterparts (for example, if the women’s team wins the world cup, each player gets a $75,000 bonus; if the men’s team wins, each player gets a staggering bonus of $9.375 million).

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SUPREME COURT VICTORY FOR CONSTRUCTIVE DISCHARGE PLAINTIFFS

Gold scales of justice

Yesterday the United States Supreme Court issued a 7-1 opinion in Green v. Brennan.  Justice Sotomayor authored the majority opinion, which vacated and remanded the Tenth Circuit’s dismissal of Plaintiff Marvin Green’s race discrimination and retaliation complaint on timeliness grounds.

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DEVELOPMENTS IN TRANSGENDER RESTROOM LAWS

Restroom sign

North Carolina has made headlines recently for enacting laws requiring transgender people to use public bathrooms corresponding to their biological sex (as opposed to their gender identity).  North Carolina and the United States Justice Department filed competing lawsuits against each other yesterday regarding the legality of the restroom law.

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“PAW-TERNITY” LEAVE POLICIES

Puppies

As a follow up to my previous post on trends in leave policies, the latest development in the United Kingdom goes far beyond traditional maternity and paternity leave.  “Paw-ternity leave” is a benefit given to almost one in every twenty new pet owners in the UK for the purpose of settling a new animal into the household.  “The leave can be used to carry out training, attend vet appointments or simply spend more time with a new animal.”

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SO, WHAT DOES MAKE FOR A GOOD EMPLOYEE LAWSUIT?

Checkmark

Last week, our colleague Patrick Smith posted an entry on his employment blog titled, “What Makes for a Good Employee Lawsuit”.  In his blog, Patrick responded to an employment presentation given by Ohio-based attorney Randy Freking.  While the employment attorneys at Babich Goldman primarily represent employees, Patrick primarily represents employers, so his ideas on what he thinks makes a good employee lawsuit caught my eye.  Below are some of Patrick’s thoughts from an employer perspective and some of my thoughts from an employee perspective.

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“RELIGIOUS FREEDOM” OR LGBT DISCRIMINATION?

Cross

Today Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant signed a bill into law that Mississippi claims protects “sincerely held religious beliefs and moral convictions of individuals, organizations and private associations from discriminatory action by state government.”  Both gay rights groups and Mississippi’s businesses are calling the legislation “discriminatory.”

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SEXUAL HARASSMENT LAWSUIT FILED AGAINST COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY

Classroom

On March 23, the New York Times reported on a sexual harassment and sex discrimination lawsuit filed recently by Enrichetta Ravina against Columbia University.  Ms. Ravina, an assistant professor, worked with another professor at the university to obtain data as part of her research which she hoped would eventually lead to tenure.  The professor had a relationship with the company that held the data and used that relationship to help Ms. Ravina get the data she needed.  Because of that relationship, the professor could also influence the company to revoke Ms. Ravina’s access to the data.  Among other things, Ms. Ravina says that when her research got to where taking the data away would have damaged the project, the professor harassed her and interfered with her research.  According to the lawsuit, the more Ms. Ravina rebuked the professor’s sexual advances, the worse his behavior became.  For its part, Ms. Ravina alleges Columbia ignored and marginalized her complaints, telling her to forget about the research and move on and comparing her situation to a soap opera.

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