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Dear Littler: Do We Have to Provide the Kitchen Sink (Literally!) to Lactating Employees?

Dear Littler: A long-term San Francisco-based employee with our company is returning soon from maternity leave. In discussing her return date, she requested accommodations for expressing breast milk at work. After working with our human resources manager, we decided to install a lock on her office door so that she would have a private and convenient place to do so. The employee is not satisfied with this measure, however, and has requested a room with both a sink and a refrigerator for her private use. We have a kitchen on a nearby floor, but we aren’t sure if that is necessary or sufficient. Also, we have locations throughout the country, and similar questions keep coming up at our various regional offices. Do we really need to provide “the kitchen sink” to be in compliance with lactation accommodation laws? What are our duties?

The Future of Federal Pay Equity Law, According to Democratic Presidential Candidates

State pay equity laws, in large part, has been a response to a perception that the federal government is not acting effectively or quickly enough to address gender and race pay gaps. Not surprisingly, several democratic presidential candidates have staked out platforms on how they will address pay inequities at the federal level – some more specific than others.

SCOTUS Scheduled to Hear Oral Arguments on Whether LGBTQ Rights Are Protected by Title VII

Executive Summary: The next session of the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) is just around the corner. On October 8, 2019, SCOTUS will hear oral argument on three closely watched cases, Bostock v. Clayton Co., Georgia, Altitude Express, Inc. v. Zarda and R.G. & G.R. Harris Funeral Home v. EEOC. All three cases address the question of whether Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits discrimination based on “sex,” among other things, protects LGBTQ rights in the employment setting. Zarda and Bostock, which have been consolidated by SCOTUS, will grapple with whether Title VII protections extend to discrimination based on sexual orientation, while R.G. & G.R. Harris Funeral Home will look at whether those protections encompass gender identity and transgender status.

Title IX Alert Fall 2019

To assist collegiate sports administrators in assessing emerging Title IX issues, we are pleased to provide the fall 2019 issue of the Title IX Alert. This publication highlights topical issues such as proposed regulations, coaching obligations, and prominent court cases, among others.

Keeping Compliant with Expanding State and Local Equal Pay Laws

Since 2016, hundreds of bills and dozens of new laws aimed at closing the pay gap have been introduced and enacted at both the state and local levels. These laws include jurisdiction-specific pay equity laws, salary history inquiry bans, and wage transparency protections. Each of these types of laws are described more fully below.

Circuit Split on Student’s Due Process Right to Cross-Examination in Title IX Matters

Constitutional due process does not mean a student accused of assault has the right to directly cross-examine his accuser in adjudications under Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 at state institutions of higher education, the federal appeals court in Boston has held. Haidak v. University of Massachusetts-Amherst, No. 18-1248 (1st Cir. Aug. 6, 2019).

Minding the Pay Gap: What Employers Need to Know as Pay Equity Protections Widen

The pay gap – or paying women and other historically marginalized groups less for the same or substantially similar work – has increasingly been in the media spotlight. Politicians have also taken note. While there have been pay discrimination laws on the books at the federal level and in most states for decades, over the past several years, state and local governments and Puerto Rico have passed numerous new laws all aimed at closing the pay gap.

What Employers Need to Know Now About Pregnancy Accommodations

When it comes to pregnancy, reasonable accommodations can be incredibly tricky and often leave employers with all sorts of questions.

New York Governor Kicks Off U.S. Women’s Soccer Team’s Ticker-Tape Parade with Equal Pay Legislation

On the heels of the U.S. Women’s Soccer Team’s World Cup win, Governor Andrew Cuomo on July 10, 2019, signed into law two bills that expand New York’s existing equal pay laws.

Federal Bill Banning Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Discrimination Passes in the House

On Friday, May 17, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a sweeping bill which would prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity in workplaces, public accommodations, housing and more. Called the “Equality Act of 2019,” the bill would amend several civil rights laws to protect members of the LGBTQ community from discrimination in employment, housing, public accommodations, education, federally funded programs, credit and jury service.
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