Employment Law the Objective of Term Paper

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This decision overturned the previous decision in Atkins v. Children's Hospital which held that a state maximum hour law was an unconstitutional infringement on the right of freedom of contract and hence a violation of the Due Process Clause. The justification of the Court's reversal was based upon the declaration that a public interest was vested in ensuring an adequate level of wages for working individuals;

2) Jones and Laughlin v. NLRB (1937) - the Supreme Court held that the NLRA was a constitutional exercise of Congress' power under the Commerce Clause. In so holding, the Court rejected previous interpretations of the Commerce Clause that had placed severe limits on Congressional power to legislate regarding the private sector. The Court justified reversal in this case based upon the declaration that there is a public interest in ensuring an adequate level of wages for working people. (Stone, 2008, p. 4)

IV. LAWS PRESENTLY in EXISTENCE

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as well as the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) make it illegal to discriminate in any aspect of employment whatsoever including the following:

Hiring and firing;

Compensation, assignment, or classification of employees; transfer, promotion, layoff, or recall; job advertisements; recruitment; testing; use of company facilities; training and apprenticeship programs; fringe benefits; pay, retirement plans, and disability leave; or other terms and conditions of employment. (the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, 2008)

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission state that the following are also included and are discriminatory practices under these laws:

harassment on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, or age; retaliation against an individual for filing a charge of discrimination, participating in an investigation, or opposing discriminatory practices; employment decisions based on stereotypes or assumptions about the abilities, traits, or performance of individuals of a certain sex, race, age, religion, or ethnic group, or individuals with disabilities; and denying employment opportunities to a person because of marriage to, or association with, an individual of a particular race, religion, national origin, or an individual with a disability. Title VII also prohibits discrimination because of participation in schools or places of worship associated with a particular racial, ethnic, or religious group. (U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, 2008, p.1)

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission also states that employers are required: "...to post notices to all employees advising them of their rights under the laws EEOC enforces and their right to be free from retaliation. Such notices must be accessible, as needed, to persons with visual or other disabilities that affect reading." (2008, p. 1) Specifically prohibited by Title VII is not only "intentional discrimination, but also practices that have the effect of discriminating against individuals because of their race, color, national origin, religion or sex." (U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, 2008, p.1)

In relation to national origin discrimination stated is: "It is illegal to discriminate against an individual because of birthplace, ancestry, culture, or linguistic characteristics common to a specific ethnic group. A rule requiring that employees speak only English on the job may violate Title VII unless an employer shows that the requirement is necessary for conducting business. If the employer believes such a rule is necessary, employees must be informed when English is required and the consequences for violating the rule." (U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, 2008, p. 1)

The Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA) of 1986

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission states that the Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA) of 1986 "...requires employers to assure that employees hired are legally authorized to work in the U.S. However, an employer who requests employment verification only for individuals of a particular national origin, or individuals who appear to be or sound foreign, may violate both Title VII and IRCA; verification must be obtained from all applicants and employees. Employers who impose citizenship requirements or give preferences to U.S. citizens in hiring or employment opportunities also may violate IRCA." (p.1) the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission states in relation to 'Religious Accommodation' that an employer is required to "...reasonably accommodate the religious belief of an employee or prospective employee, unless doing so would impose an undue hardship." (2008, p. 1) in relation to 'Sex Discrimination' the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission states that the broad prohibitions in Title VII "...against sex discrimination specifically cover:

1) Sexual Harassment - This includes practices ranging from direct requests for sexual favors to workplace conditions that create a hostile environment for persons of either gender, including same sex harassment. (the "hostile environment" standard also applies to harassment on the bases of race, color, national origin, religion, age, and disability.); and 2) Pregnancy-Based Discrimination - Pregnancy, childbirth, and related medical conditions must be treated in the same way as other temporary illnesses or conditions." (2008, p.1)

Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA)

The 'Age Discrimination in Employment Act' (ADEA) contains what is a "...broad ban against age discrimination also specifically prohibits:

1) statements or specifications in job notices or advertisements of age preference and limitations. An age limit may only be specified in the rare circumstance where age has been proven to be a bona fide occupational qualification (BFOQ);

2) discrimination on the basis of age by apprenticeship programs, including joint labor-management apprenticeship programs; and 3) denial of benefits to older employees. An employer may reduce benefits based on age only if the cost of providing the reduced benefits to older workers is the same as the cost of providing benefits to younger workers." (U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, 2008, p.1)

Equal Pay Act

The 'Equal Pay Act' is stated by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission to specifically prohibit discrimination "...on the basis of sex in the payment of wages or benefits, where men and women perform work of similar skill, effort, and responsibility for the same employer under similar working conditions." (2008, p.1) Specifically noted by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission are the following:

1) Employers may not reduce wages of either sex to equalize pay between men and women;

2) a violation of the EPA may occur where a different wage was/is paid to a person who worked in the same job before or after an employee of the opposite sex; and 3) a violation may also occur where a labor union causes the employer to violate the law. (U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, 2008, p.1)

Titles I and V of the Americans with Disabilities Act

The American with Disabilities Act specifically prohibits discrimination on the "basis of disability in all employment practices." (U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, 2008, p.1) an individual with a disability is defined under the Americans with Disabilities Act as "...a person who has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities, has a record of such an impairment, or is regarded as having such an impairment. Major life activities are activities that an average person can perform with little or no difficulty such as walking, breathing, seeing, hearing, speaking, learning, and working." (U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, 2008, p.1)an individual who is a 'qualified employee or applicant with a disability' is someone "who satisfies skill, experience, education, and other job-related requirements of the position held or desired, and who, with or without reasonable accommodation, can perform the essential functions of that position." (U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, 2008, p.1) reasonable accommodation is stated to include, yet not be limited to: "...making existing facilities used by employees readily accessible to and usable by persons with disabilities; job restructuring; modification of work schedules; providing additional unpaid leave; reassignment to a vacant position; acquiring or modifying equipment or devices; adjusting or modifying examinations, training materials, or policies; and providing qualified readers or interpreters. Reasonable accommodation may be necessary to apply for a job, to perform job functions, or to enjoy the benefits and privileges of employment that are enjoyed by people without disabilities." (U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, 2008, p.1) the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission states that the employer is not under a requirements to:

1) Lower production standards to make an accommodation; or 2) Provide personal use items such as eyeglasses or hearing aids. (U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, 2008, p.1)

However, the employer is required to: "...make a reasonable accommodation to a qualified individual with a disability unless doing so would impose an undue hardship on the operation of the employer's business. Undue hardship means an action that requires significant difficulty or expense when considered in relation to factors such as a business' size, financial resources, and the nature and structure of its operation." (U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, 2008, p.1)

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission states in relation to prohibited inquiries and examinations that prior to "...making an offer of employment, an employer may not ask job applicants about the existence, nature, or severity of a…[continue]

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