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Sexual harassment not absent from nursing industry

Many people choose to work in the nursing profession because they want to help people. Of course, coming in contact with numerous people does not always bode well. Unfortunately, it is not always patients or patients' families that cause issue as other workers could carry out actions that fall into the category of sexual harassment.

California readers may be interested in a recent study that was conducted that involved over 6,200 nurses, nurse practitioners and physician assistants answering questions about sexual harassment. The survey gave stipulations regarding what actions were considered harassment. Behaviors involving sexual comments, infringing on personal space, unwanted touching and leering were the most common reported actions. It was also noted that 11 percent of the participants indicated that they had personally experienced sexual harassment while at work. 

Large corporations face frequent wage and hour claims

Wage theft is nothing new. Workers in California and across the country have been involved in wage and hour claims for generations, and it seems that the problem continues. Most often, reports tell of wage theft in retail, restaurants and seasonal employment, where workers make low wages and may have reasons to avoid complaining about the unfair treatment. However, wage theft by employers is not limited to mom-and-pop businesses just getting by. In fact, some of the wealthiest corporations steal from their workers.

Giants like Walmart, JP Morgan and State Farm regularly face lawsuits because of illegal wage practices. A recent report cited various reasons why businesses that can afford to pay a fair wage continue to steal from their employees. It may be that workers do not always have the support of a union to fight for their pay, and in many areas, the laws related to fair wages are not uniformly enforced.

Pregnant women commonly face discrimination at work

Most women have goals in life that they hope to achieve. Some of those goals may involve career success, and others many involve starting a family. For many women, it is not unusual to have both of these goals in mind. While the majority of career women are perfectly capable of balancing work duties, pregnancy and motherhood, many expectant and new mothers face discrimination on the job.

It may interest California readers to know that there are laws in place that work to protect pregnant women or those who intend to become pregnant from discriminatory actions. A woman cannot be dismissed from her job simply for being pregnant, and women applying for jobs cannot be passed over because they are pregnant or plan to have children in the future. Unfortunately, laws do not always prevent employers from acting unfairly.

California Expands Protections Based on Employees' National Origin

California has finalized a new rule expanding national origin discrimination protections under the state Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA). This new rule takes effect on July 1, 2018.

Sexual harassment has no place at work, or elsewhere

When situations become sexually charged, they can often be difficult to navigate. In many cases, the advances or other actions taken are inappropriate or unwanted, and they can make individuals feel uncomfortable. Beyond that, some actions can become so continual and excessive that they could constitute sexual harassment, which is a major issue at places of employment and elsewhere.

California readers may be interested in hearing about a woman in another state who contended with such inappropriate actions for some time. Reports stated that she worked for celebrity chef Mike Isabella and became the highest-ranking woman in his culinary business organization. Despite her success, the woman believes that the work environment accepted contempt for women and remained hostile due to the sexual misconduct that occurred.

Starbucks addresses racial bias during sensitivity training

You may remember an incident a few months ago during which two African American men were arrested at a Starbucks. Their alleged crime? Reportedly, they were only sitting at a table waiting for a friend and had not yet ordered anything. The coffee shop’s manager called law enforcement, who arrived and took the men away in handcuffs. Like other Californians, you may have felt outraged to hear about this egregiously racist treatment of people who didn’t commit any actual crime.

NPR reports that officials from Starbucks responded by apologizing and settling with the men out of court. They also offered to pay for their college educations and reported that the manager is no longer working for the coffee chain. What else did the company do to address racist attitudes at work, you may wonder?

Fired doctor wins lawsuit regarding workplace discrimination

Having a disability affects numerous people in California and other parts of the country. However, this aspect of a person's life does not necessary hold him or her back from being able to lead a typical life, including holding a job. Employers may need to make certain accommodations for workers with disabilities, and in the event of workplace discrimination, employees may need to take legal action.

It was recently reported that a doctor in another state was awarded damages after being dismissed from his job. Apparently, the doctor had been diagnosed with cerebral palsy at the time of birth, but he was able to carry out his necessary job-related duties with provided accommodations. It was unclear what caused the man to believe that his disability contributed to his termination, but the lawsuit filed against the medical facility states disability discrimination as part of the claim.

San Francisco's Consideration of Salary History Ordinance

San Francisco's Consideration of Salary History Ordinance (the "Ordinance") takes effect on July 1, 2018. The Ordinance in certain respects mirrors California's Labor Code section 432.3, which went into effect on January 1, 2018.

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