Discrimination - Civil Rights & Employment
Civil Rights involves many specific rights individuals may have. There are two venues for filing a discrimination case. You can file on the federal side with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC"). This then allows you to file in federal court under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. On the Illinois state side you can file with the Illinois Department of Human Rights ("IDHR"). If there is a finding of substantial evidence at the IDHR a complaint can be filed with the Illinois Human Rights Commission ("IHRC") for trial.
Here are some U.S. Supreme Court cases involving employees' rights in employment discrimination.
- Griggs v. Duke Power Co. (1971)
In this case, African-American job applicants were excluded based on tests that were not related to the job. This case made it harder for employers to come up with reasons for discriminating against certain groups of applicants.
- Cleveland Bd. of Ed. V. LaFleur (1974)
A school can't treat pregnant workers different from non-pregnant workers. This is federal law and in Illinois discrimination based on pregnancy is also covered by the Illinois Human Rights Act.
- Meritor Savings Bank v. Vinson (1986)
Expanded sexual harassment claims. Previously, sexual harassment was quid quo pro which is Latin for "This for That." In this case hostile work environment becomes a second type of sexual harassment. Cases can now be brought under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Additionally in Illinois hostile work environment sexual harassment cases can be brought under the Illinois Human Rights Act and may be filed at the Illinois Department of Human Rights ("IDHR").
- Johnson v. Transportation Agency (1987)
The gender can't be taken into account on whether an employee should be promoted. It makes employers take a gender neutral view of employees.
- Oncale v. Sundowner Offshore Serv., Inc. (1987)
Makes same-sex sexual harassment (i.e. male-male, or female-female) the same as male-female or female-male sexual harassment. In federal court you can file based on Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. If you choose to stay in the state system in Illinois you can file with the Illinois Department of Human Rights ("IDHR").
- Burlington Industries, Inc. Ellerth (1998)
If an supervisor engages in sexual harassment the person being harassed can still sue the employer and get damage awards even if there is no actual monetary damage. It provides absolute liability to an employer for the conduct of a supervisor.
- Faragher v. City of Boca Raton (1998)
Takes into consideration the conduct of the supervisor, employer and employee in discrimination cases.
Another area of employment law which is new is based on a new law President Bush signed. The Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act ("GINA") bars genetic discrimination in health insurance and employment. GINA also limits access to and disclosure of genetic information.
Peter represents individuals in the following areas:
Employee rights issues;
Sexual Harassment actions;
Title VII actions;
Gender discrimination, including equal pay and promotion ("glass ceiling") matters;
Racial discrimination, including police brutality, profiling or discrimination;
Sexual orientation discrimination;
Discrimination against individuals with disabilities;
First amendment rights of free speech and protest;
Equal Employment Opportunity Commission("EEOC") complaints;
Illinois Department of Human Rights ("IDHR") complaints.
Attorney Peter LaSorsa is committed to promoting positive social change both in the workplace and in society at large. Don't suffer alone. If you believe you have been discriminated against or experienced a violation of your civil rights,
CONTACT attorney Peter LaSorsa online or call 24/7 312-505-5038 to set up a FREE consultation to discuss the various issues concerning you.