Whataburger, job status during a coronavirus quarantine, paying for unused amenities, and more in Our Social Media Posts This Week – May 17-23, 2020.

Below is a review of the posts (on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter) from the past week. You can check out the full posts by clicking on the links.

In the post on Sunday 5/17/20, we saw that Whataburger will pay $180,000 to settle EEOC retaliation suit. What happened? A general manager repeatedly instructed her hiring manager to hire white, and not black, applicants for employment. The manager complained; what she was told is in the post. Then she was subjected to … what is noted in the post. She eventually resigned. Now the employer is paying to make things right.

TAKEAWAY: Don’t break the law and don’t ask anyone else to either.

The post on Monday 5/18/20 asked: Can you lose your job if you are quarantined during the coronavirus outbreak? It’s a good question given the numbers of people required to quarantine. Will the emergency/extended FMLA help? Maybe. There is also the ADA (if it applies). Can there be an accommodation (as in the post)? There are options as in the post.

TAKEAWAY: Consult an employment lawyers as to rights and obligations of all concerned.

The post on Tuesday 5/19/20  talked about homeowners who want  Association dues refunds for amenities they can’t use. We see it everywhere: pools, fitness centers, clubhouses, and more are closed, but owners are still responsible for the dues that fund them. Some feel they should get refunds since the costs incurred for the amenities are not being incurred. See the post for their arguments. There is also the counter argument: cleaning expenses will go up, as will other things noted in the post. Further, just as in any year, one expense may be less than budgeted while another may be more, so only the end of the year will tell if there is any surplus.

TAKEAWAY: Don’t jump the gun – some costs may decrease, but others will increase. You also don’t know what will happen with collections. Do the calculations when reasonable, not necessarily now.

The post on Wednesday 5/20/20 told us that Haynes International is to pay $180,000 to resolve EEOC age discrimination allegation. Haynes is a metals company. It has many employees. As relevant, the EEOC alleged that it did not hire applicants 40 and over for a general operator assistant position. Did age have anything to do with the job duties? See the post. After suit was filed, the company agreed to settle for both monetary and non-monetary relief.

            TAKEAWAY: Make sure not to take adverse action against anyone based on a protected characteristic – the illegal action will catch up to you.

In the post on Thursday 5/21/20 we learned that Erickson Living Management will pay $151,000 to settle EEOC retaliation lawsuit. Erickson builds and manages retirement communities. What they need to build is knowledge of applicable law. Its director of health services, talent development and global programs complained to HR – the substance is in the post. She also told HR that she feared retaliation. Well, she soon found herself out of a job and the EEOC suing on her behalf. See the post for more on the allegations.

TAKEAWAY: Don’t retaliate against people who complain about (possibly) illegal actions or practices – listen and make changes instead.

The post on Friday 5/22/20 was about Price Waterhouse agreeing to change recruiting practices and pay $11.6M to settle age bias claim. The claim is that its targeting of recent college grads amounted to age discrimination. Huh? Persons aged 40 and over said marketing ran afoul of the law – see the post for how. Once the plaintiffs were granted class action status, it settled. The non-monetary relief is laid out in the post and really makes you wonder if it was worth it for the company.

TAKEAWAY: Remember that applicants and employees have protection under the law – make sure to treat all evenly, regardless of age.

Finally, in the post yesterday 5/23/20, we learned that a manufacturer will pay $93K to settle claims it permitted ‘an ugly mix’ of sexism and racism. A former plant manager for Porous Materials “used racial slurs” and made remarks like those noted in the post. And if that were not bad enough, instead of putting a stop to it, the owner treated the women who complained more harshly instead of making the behavior stop; see the post. Good thing this settled.

TAKEAWAY: Don’t allow supervisors to treat any employee differently based on a protected characteristic – train the and discipline if they don’t follow proper procedures.

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