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San Francisco Employment Law Blog

Fighting sexual harassment in California's state capitol

Sexual harassment has returned to the forefront of public conversation with the unfolding scandal around decades of systematic harassment of women in Hollywood. This matter has grown larger than the entertainment industry, as the increased focus is putting the spotlight on businesses unfriendly to women and other protected groups.

Leaders of venture capital firms, tech startups and banks across California have recently had to reflect on their policies protecting a safe and productive workplaces by preventing sexual harassment. A new front is opening in the seat of the state's government itself.

Elder care litigation is a rising topic in employment law

Employment law has expanded in recent decades to account for different populations requiring special protections in the workplace. Women, members of ethnic minorities and people with specific disabilities have all received legal validation of the right to meaningfully engage with and avoid discrimination in their workplaces.

Age discrimination has received more attention as members of the workplace age across generations. However, there is no current federal law protecting employees with responsibilities for the aging, in the workplace or at home.

Ruling favors plaintiffs in workplace discrimination suits

People with different abilities are protected by universal rights to fair employment and housing. Employers are prohibited from discriminating against potential workers due to appearances or physical health, and employees who require assistance to work may expect management's help in engaging meaningfully with a job.

When disputes arise in the workplace regarding discrimination, mediation or arbitration can serve a valuable role in resolving it. These forms of conflict resolution utilize professional mediators to arrive at a binding or nonbinding resolution for employers and workers.

Former judge alleges racial and gender bias

Employees should feel that they will be heard and trusted by the employer and managers if they find a problem in the workplace. In the case of public services, this trust becomes the foundation of the people's health and safety -- and ignorance of problems is doubly inexcusable.

An economy as diverse and vibrant as California's relies on good public services as much as the people do. If someone is demoted or dismissed for reporting a hazard, he or she may have the basis for a wrongful termination or retaliation suit against his or her current or former employer.

Male former employee alleges sexual harassment

Sexual harassment is a scourge in every industry that it affects, destroying trust and hobbling productivity by abusing and demoralizing employees in the workplace. The problem can be as serious as physical or sexual abuse or as commonplace as unwelcome comments from co-workers or supervisors.

A majority of reported sexual harassment cases involve male abusers affecting female victims with a hostile work environment. Women have reported inappropriate touching, explicit materials in the workplace and the denial of promotions or benefits after unacceptable behavior.

Discrimination extends to California's farmers

One of the greatest drivers of California's surging economy is agriculture, which provides the state with ample produce and the nation with specialty foods that are grown few other places. Although efforts to end employment discrimination are often centered in the cities, farming has its share of issues with discriminatory practices.

Female and minority farmers have reported many problems trying to sustain or grow their plots and operations. Women are less likely to be able to buy or lease property for farming for a fair price, if at all. White male colleagues often snap up the land far more easily.

Race discrimination is still very much alive in the workplace

You go to work day in and day out, and due to the atmosphere in your work environment, you dread it. Employees make offhanded remarks about your looks or your heritage, and your supervisors or managers do not appreciate you or feel you are worthy of advancing your career -- even though someone else with less experience and a different skin tone just got the promotion for which you applied. Sound familiar? If so, you may be a victim of race discrimination.

Sadly, in California and elsewhere, race discrimination is very much alive in the workplace. Employers may do all that they can to make you think it is all in your head, and reporting the problem may seem to make things worse instead of better. When your employer fails to stop the problem, you may have legal recourse.

Married professionals file wrongful termination lawsuit

Unfair business practices are a serious issue that can weaken a strong, diversified economy such as the one driving California's prosperity. A hidden danger in ending bad practices can be the unfair termination of dedicated employees who attempted to rectify problems from inside a large business.

An international banking organization recovering from charges of widespread unethical processes is the target of a new suit, now for wrongful termination. A married pair of former regional presidents claims they were dismissed after trying to get superiors to address bad-faith sales practices.

Nurse claims wrongful termination in CA lawsuit

Leaving a job is often a straightforward event, but it can be stressful and damaging to one's career if one is fired for cause. Those who believe they were wrongfully removed from their position at work have the option to fight the decision in the courts.

A California nurse is fighting for her job after she was dismissed from a community medical center by the operator of its health care system. The reason for her dismissal is the unauthorized access of medical records while the nurse was preparing patients' care.

New bill targets sexual harassment in venture capital

Sexual harassment is a major problem in many industries, and the consequences are far broader than workplace politics. Inappropriate speech and behavior reduces participation in the workforce, erodes faith in protective laws and slows innovation.

Fewer economies can appreciate the value of harassment-free workplaces as much as California. The variety of jobs and products created in the state encompasses a high volume of male and female workers, and each worker must understand and follow basic guidelines for preventing sexual harassment.