When we schedule our annual Discrimination Update, we sometimes wonder if we’ll find enough interesting new developments to fill a program. Every year we are reminded of the folly of this concern, and 2012 has been no exception.
Here are just a few highlights:
- Supervisors are in the limelight this year, with the U.S. Supreme Court considering who is a supervisor until Title VII and the Law Court considering (again) whether they can be personally liable under the Maine Human Rights Act.
- Transgendered discrimination is drawing more attention.
- More courts are saying employers have to prefer disabled employees for vacancies as an aspect of reasonable accommodation.
- “Regarded as” discrimination claims are on the rise because they only require proof of an impairment, not a disability.
- Accommodating employees with substance abuse issues is becoming more complex.
- A more aggressive Maine Human Rights Commission is expecting more from employers in its investigations.
It turns out we can’t possibly cover all the new developments in this year’s update, but we hope you’ll join Katy Rand as she provides a quick tour of some of the most challenging issues that have risen to prominence in 2012.