Author: Jill Gormley, Strong and Clear Communications
It is illegal to discriminate in the workplace, and illegal discrimination is not limited to unfair hiring and disciplinary practices. Disparities in the benefits granted employees, including access to paid and unpaid leave, also may constitute discrimination. It is possible for leave policies to violate the Civil Rights Acts of 1964 and its 1991 amendments, the Pregnancy Discrimination Act (PDA), the Equal Pay Act (EPA), the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. Therefore, it is important for employers to carefully consider how they will grant leave and for what purpose, and to then adhere strictly to the policy when granting leave. Doing so can offer substantial protection against discrimination claims. To prevent discrimination in the granting and administration of employee leaves, employers should adhere to the following steps.