On March 14, 2022, the EEOC released a new technical assistance guidance document entitled “The COVID-19 Pandemic and Caregiver Discrimination Under Federal Employment Discrimination Law.

Essentially, the guidance reiterates that an employer may not discriminate against an applicant or employee under federal law on the basis of protected classes such sex (including pregnancy, sexual orientation, or gender identity), race, color, religion, national origin, age (40 or older), disability or genetic information.  However, the purpose of the guidance is to illustrate how discrimination on the basis of a protected class can occur, possibly even inadvertently, if employers make assumptions and decisions based on an applicant’s or employee’s caregiving obligations due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Continue Reading The EEOC’s New Guidance Says Discrimination Against “Caregivers” May Violate Federal Law

While employers were busy dealing with a multitude of issues during the peak of the Covid-19 pandemic in the Spring of 2020, the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (“DFEH”) quietly issued some amended regulations that employers should be aware of as they relate to employer interviewing and hiring practices. The regulations went into effect on July 1, 2020 and below are some of the highlights.

  1. Employers cannot seek information about an applicant’s religion or disability through certain pre-employment questions about the applicant’s availability for work. The regulations state expressly that:

Pre-employment inquiries regarding an applicant’s availability for work on certain days and times shall not be used to ascertain the applicant’s religious creed, disability, or medical condition. Such inquiries must clearly communicate that an employee need not disclose any scheduling restrictions based on legally protected grounds, in language such as: “Other than time off for reasons related to your religion, a disability, or a medical condition, are there any days or times when you are unavailable to work?” or “Other than time off for reasons related to your religion, a disability, or a medical condition, are you available to work the proposed schedule?

  1. Likewise, an application for employment also cannot contain such questions. The regulations provide that:

“Schedule Information. An application’s request for information related to schedule and availability for work shall not be used to ascertain the applicant’s religious creed, disability, or medical condition. Such requests must clearly communicate that an employee need not disclose any scheduling restrictions based on legally protected grounds in language such as: “Other than time off for reasons related to your religion, a disability, or a medical condition, are there any days or times when you are unavailable to work?” or “Other than time off for reasons related to your religion, a disability, or a medical condition, are you available to work the proposed schedule?
Continue Reading Are You Asking Applicants When They Can’t Work? If So, You May Be Violating FEHA

Weintraub Tobin’s 2021 Labor and Employment Virtual Seminar and Training schedule is now available. Click here for a copy of the schedule.
If you have any questions on any of our seminars or would like to inquire on private, custom-tailored training, please contact: 
Ramona Carrillo 
(916) 558-6046.

The California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (“DFEH”) is the state agency charged with enforcing California’s laws against harassment, discrimination, and retaliation in employment, housing, and business establishments throughout the state. It proclaims on its website that it is “the institutional centerpiece of California’s broad anti-discrimination and hate crimes policy.” According to the

A blog we published here on May 28, 2020, warned that whistleblower, disability and leave claims against employers may reach a fever pitch as workplaces begin reopening from the COVID-19 shutdown.  A recent audit by the U.S. Department of Labor Office of Inspector General (“OIG”) confirms that some of those types of claims already are