EEOC Commissioner Victoria Lipnic spoke last week at a legal compliance symposium. She spelled out five ways you could find yourself playing the proverbial “knock knock” game with the EEOC.
1. The use of credit or criminal histories to screen new hires. The EEOC views these practices as potentially triggering disparate impact discrimination. If you use them, be sure to check with counsel. They can be ok, so long as they are consistent with the position in question and you use an individualized assessment as opposed to a blanket rule.
2. Automatic termination of employees when their medical leaves of absence expire. Remember to always consider whether you need to offer additional leave as an accommodation under the ADA.
3. Failing to accommodate pregnant employees. Under the ADA Amendments Act, temporary medical conditions like pregnancy may be able to qualify for protection.
4. Being unaware of the so-called “emerging issues” – transgender discrimination and family responsibility discrimination, to name a couple of relative newbies on the EEOC’s radar screen.
5. You have an “out with the old in with the new” (read young) attitude. Age discrimination is still a biggie for the EEOC.
It’s always a good idea to check yourself on compliance. The last thing you want is a surprise agency visit.
[Hat tip: Constangy, Brooks & Smith Employment and Labor Insider]