Posts in HR.

The proposal to do away with confidentiality in sexual harassment settlements is likely to hurt victims at least as much as it exposes perps.

My apologies to Clement Clarke Moore. Happy holidays!

This bustin' on HR is gettin' me down, You got to quit kickin' HR around.

And did it with such grace! After all, she is Miss Manners.

A boss who grabs an employee's breasts without her consent is indeed guilty of sexual harassment.

What are you grateful for this year? Here is my list.

Your reviews of your employer may not be as anonymous as you think.

According to a Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll published this week, 48 percent of working women believed they had been victims of sexual harassment in the workplace.

My reaction was, “Only 48 percent?”

Words fail me. Let’s just say that I hope he is sincere about getting the help he needs to turn his life around.

Which, among other things, should include trying to make some form of restitution to his allegedvictims. (None of this ridiculous “atonement by fighting the NRA.”)

There are more Weinstein stories than I can link to, but here are the two original sources: The article by Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey in The New York Times is here, and Ronan Farrow’s excellent and very disturbing article in The New Yorker is here.

Mr. Weinstein, through a spokesperson, has denied engaging in any non-consensual sexual relations or retaliating against anyone who refused his advances. The full denial is in the video, below.

Here are my eight takes from an employment law and Human Resources perspective:

No. 1: “Quid pro quo” harassment is just a fancy word for extortion — where the prize is sex, instead of money or property. When an employer threatens to terminate (or otherwise punish) an employee for refusing sexual advances, or promises to hire (or otherwise reward) her for participating, then that is extortion. (I’m using “she” and “her” for convenience, but men can be victims, too.) In the ordinary employment context, an employer is strictly (automatically) liable if a supervisor or manager engages in this type of harassment.

This week, a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit held that a “multimonth leave of absence is beyond the scope of a reasonable accommodation” under the Americans with Disabilities Act.

In doing so, the court rejected longstanding guidance from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission that a long-term medical leave is a reasonable accommodation when the leave is (1) definite and time-limited (not open ended); (2) requested in advance; and (3) likely to enable the employee to perform the essential job functions on return. Noting that under the EEOC’s position “the length of leave does not matter,” the court characterized it as an “open-ended extension” of leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act.

Robin Shea has more than 20 years' experience in employment litigation, including Title VII and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act (including the Amendments Act). 
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