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News Flash: Sexual Harassment

Vanessa Bailey, a gardener at Balboa Park in Encino, complained that she was sexually harassed by her co-workers. Bailey claimed, among other things, that while she was in a city truck, a co-worker exposed himself to her and another had magazines showing naked women. Bailey also said that a park supervisor kissed her against her […]

News Flash: Coca-Cola Agrees To Record $192.5 Million Settlement

Coca-Cola has settled a race bias class action lawsuit for an unprecedented $192.5 million. The case was brought by 2,000 African-American workers who claimed they were systematically bypassed for raises and promotions. Coke has also agreed to a complex company-wide restructuring plan with pay equity adjustments phased in over 10 years. Plus, Coke will link […]

Disabled Employees: Seniority Policy Must Give Way To Accommodations; What To Do Now

Most employers know they must explore the possibility of making a reasonable accommodation requested by a disabled worker. But what if an employee wants an accommodation that conflicts with your seniority system? And how far do you have to go in working with the employee to accommodate their request? In a surprising reversal of its […]

Sexual Harassment: Jury Awards More Than $1 Million Because Employer’s Action Didn’t Go Far Enough; Tips On Responding To Harassment Complaints

In a case that illustrates the danger of being accused of not fully investigating or taking remedial action that is too little or too late, an Orange County jury recently returned a seven-figure verdict for an auto club employee who complained about sexual harassment. We’ll explain how the Automobile Club of Southern California got into […]

Drug Tests: New Restrictions On Random Testing

A recent California Court of Appeal ruling involving an employee who agreed to undergo random drug testing places new restrictions on when you can administer drug tests. Random Drug Test Conducted On Employee’s Day Off Perrin Edgerton, a Caltrans equipment operator in the Redding area, failed a random drug test that came up positive for […]

Employee Benefits: New EEOC Guidelines On When It Is—And Isn’t—Legal To Discriminate In Providing Benefits, Part 1

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has released comprehensive new guidelines addressing the legality of benefit differentials under several federal anti-discrimination laws. The guidelines apply to health and life insurance, long- and short-term disability benefits, severance, pension and early retirement incentives.

News Flash: Federal Court Orders Employer To Stop Requiring Employees To Sign Arbitration Agreements

The controversy over the use of mandatory arbitration for employment disputes continues as federal and state courts send contradictory signals to employers. While the California Supreme Court recently OK’d the use of mandatory arbitration, the federal Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has said that for some types of claims, such as age or race bias, […]

News Flash: Temporary Workers

A lawsuit filed by 94 temporary employees of Sacramento County who sought retroactive benefits was resolved under a $1.4 million settlement. The workers claimed the county illegally classified them as temporary employees, thereby denying them benefits. They said that under the county charter, temporary workers may be employed for only 30 days, whereas many of […]

News Flash: Domestic Violence Leave Law

  Gov. Davis recently signed a new law (A.B. 2357) that expands the grounds for domestic violence victims to take unpaid time off from work, such as for counseling and relocation. However, some provisions of the new law, which has separate rules for employers with 25 or more workers, are ambiguous and may require legislative […]

News Flash: Federal Court Takes Up San Francisco Domestic Partner Ordinance

A federal appeals court is currently considering challenges to San Francisco’s cutting-edge domestic partner ordinance. The law requires that companies who dobusiness with the city provide unmarried employees who have domestic partners the same benefits as married workers. An airline trade association succeeded in invalidating the provisions of the law covering health and welfare benefits. […]