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Employer's Dreadlock Ban Is Not Racial Discrimination, 11th Circuit Finds

The 11th Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that an employer's refusal to hire an African-American job applicant because she refused to cut her dreadlocks is not illegal. The federal appellate court reasoned that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act protects covered persons with respect to their immutable characteristics, but not their hairstyle.

Employer Wins Dreadlocks Deadlock

A federal appeals court recently ruled that a woman rejected from a job because she refused to cut her dreadlocks could not proceed with a race discrimination claim against the employer. The decision highlights the distinction between individual expression and inherently racial characteristics in the context of race discrimination claims under Title VII.

eLABORate: Eleventh Circuit Upholds Dreadlocks Ban in the Workplace

The Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit recently held that a company’s race-neutral grooming policy did not constitute intentional race discrimination in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, rejecting EEOC’s theory, and providing important guidance on the difference between racial and cultural characteristics.

Federal Court Rejects EEOC Concept of Race, Upholds Employer’s Dreadlock Ban

An employer’s ban on dreadlocks and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s willingness to file a lawsuit to vindicate an employee’s rights has opened a legal debate on the meaning of “race” under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

Second Circuit Adopts “Cat’s Paw” Theory of Imputing Nonsupervisory Employee’s Retaliatory Intent to Employer

In Vasquez v. Empress Ambulance Service, Inc., No. 15-3239-cv (August 29, 2016), the Second Circuit Court of Appeals set new precedent when it held that an employer may be held liable for the retaliatory intent of a nonsupervisory employee under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

Recent Enforcement Guidance provides insight into EEOC’s assessment of retaliation claims.

Retaliation claims are asserted in nearly half of the charges received by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), according to its Chair, Jenny Yang, and now comprise the most frequently alleged basis of discrimination. On August 25, 2016, the EEOC issued its Enforcement Guidance on Retaliation and Related Issues. The guidance, which replaces the EEOC’s 1998 Compliance Manual section on retaliation, addresses retaliation issues under the federal statutes enforced by the EEOC, which include:

Updated EEOC Retaliation Guidance Suggests Scrutiny for Internal Investigation Practices

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission takes an expansive position on protection given to persons who make internal complaints about discrimination in bad faith in updated guidance on retaliation law.

EEOC Guidelines Provide a Confusing Roadmap to Investigating Retaliation Claims

Employers have been warned time and time again – retaliation claims are on the rise. With the number of these claims climbing, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) issued its Final Enforcement Guidance on Retaliation and Related Issues, which are guidelines for EEOC investigators to use in investigating retaliation claims. This is the first time in nearly two decades that the Commission has updated these guidelines.1

EEOC Issues New Enforcement Guidance Regarding Retaliation Claims

Executive Summary: The EEOC has issued its final Enforcement Guidance regarding retaliation claims. The Enforcement Guidance emphasizes the agency’s broad interpretation of the protections afforded to employees who participate in EEO proceedings or complain about discriminatory practices.

The EEOC’s New Wide-Reaching Retaliation Guidance: What Should Employers Do Now?

On August 29, 2016, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) announced the release of its long awaited Enforcement Guidance on Retaliation and Related Issues, replacing Section 8 of the EEOC Compliance Menu published in 1998. The guidance, which is accompanied by a companion Small Business Fact Sheet, sets forth the EEOC’s expansive analysis of retaliation, which is now the most frequently asserted basis of discrimination in all sectors.