Tag: Mark I. Schickman

When Is a Discrimination Complaint against a Manager an Act of Harassment?

What if a manager accused of unlawful discrimination based on employees’ religion asserts that the complaint itself is an act of harassment? You owe duties all around, and you may not be able to perform one duty without risking a violation of the other. See how one employer successfully avoided that minefield.

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In search of the win-win solution

by Mark I. Schickman Too often, the workplace is viewed as a zero-sum game ― a win for an employee or loss for the boss, every savings for the company obtained from an employee concession. The political parties are playing it the same way; either employers pay more or workers get less ― nobody suggests […]

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Space: the final frontier

by Mark I. Schickman There have been many lawsuits limiting the introduction of religion into the workforce. Employees who insist on a God-given right to bash gays at the workplace are subject to termination ― despite their right to express their religious beliefs. An employee whose religion opposes taking orders from women will lose his […]

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California Supreme Court Issues Meal and Rest Break Ruling

By Mark I. Schickman California employers have been waiting since October 2008 for the California Supreme Court to issue its ruling in the Brinker Restaurant case, clarifying whether employers must “ensure” that employees take meal and rest breaks or simply “provide” those breaks. Today, the court unanimously served up a major victory to California employers […]

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Beauty and the Best

By Mark I. Schickman We have eliminated many forms of workplace discrimination and made great strides toward erasing others. Nonetheless, one form of discrimination ― “Beauty Bias,” as coined by Stanford Law Professor Deborah Rhode ― remains alive, well, and possibly inherent in the human condition. When babies are shown pictures of adults, they usually […]

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Power Corrupts

by Mark I. Schickman At its heart, the Pennsylvania State University (PSU) football scandal is a criminal matter. But it’s also the ultimate example of sexual harassment being permitted to recur openly, continuously, and notoriously in a workplace. It’s a sober reminder of what can happen if any person or group believes they are bigger […]

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Full Faith and Credit: Lessons from the Shirley Sherrod Snafu

By Mark I. Schickman Imagine a horrible accusation made against one of your managers — maybe harassment, maybe violence, maybe theft, maybe drugs. This is an outspoken employee who has sued you before — and won — and with whom you have to be careful. But under heavy pressure from top executives, you immediately fire […]

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Imus in the Mourning

by Mark I. Schickman I’ve received lots of e-mails recently about the major conflict still waging over the recent firing of eight U.S. attorneys. You wrote that the U.S. government, as an employer, should be able to fire any employee, so what was wrong if the Attorney General or the President had them fired? That […]

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