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Supreme Court may side with plaintiff in case versus Abercrombie

Although the United States Supreme Court has yet to give its final ruling over a workplace discrimination case disputing religious freedoms, the group so far appears to be agreeing with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission during the oral arguments that took place on February 25, the Hill reported.

The plaintiff is Samantha Elauf, a practicing Muslim who claims she was denied employment as a worker at an Abercrombie & Fitch Kids store in Tulsa, Oklahoma in 2008 because at the time of her application, she had donned a black headscarf called a “hijab,” which Abercrombie says is not in accordance with their “look policy.”

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg said the prospective employer should ask the potential employee if he or she has a problem with the look policy – not immediately dismiss them or refuse them the opportunity for employment.

The EEOC argued that Abercrombie’s refusal to accommodate Elauf’s religious beliefs was in violation of the Civil Rights Act, specifically Title VII.

New Albany, Ohio-based Abercrombie, on the other hand, was of the opinion that Elauf failed to inform the hiring managers of the conflicting interest and that letting her stay in the company would saddle the company with an undue burden.

The case was lifted to the Supreme Court after the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals sided with Abercrombie. Prior to that, a federal district court sided with the EEOC.

Contact our attorneys today at The Melton Law Firm by calling (512) 330-0017 if you have an employment issue in Austin or other areas in Texas that you need our legal help with.


Federal judge approves discrimination decree in Austin

Federal Judge Lee Yeakel recently resolved discrimination investigations beginning in April 2013 by signing a decree between the City of Austin in Texas and the Department of Justice concerning the state fire department’s hiring procedures, KXAN reported on November 7.

Results from the investigation prompted Yeakel to agree that discrimination was present in the hiring process and beyond. The decree requires the Austin department to hire 30 minority applicants who pass newly revised examinations. Those who are chosen will additionally receive $780,000 each in back pay.

On the other hand, the local firefighters’ union objected to the decree, claiming that empirical proof of intentional bias on the city’s part had not been present nor proven. It was also claimed that the exams were fair and non-discriminatory. Regardless, the decree will be put into effect.

The attorneys at the The Melton Law Firm know that, unfortunately, discrimination in hiring practices and employment is not uncommon. However, there are legal methods of recourse. Call our offices in Austin at (512) 330-0017 today to learn about your legal options.


Supreme Court to hear Abercrombie & Fitch religious discrimination case

The United States Supreme Court will be hearing a religious discrimination case against retailer Abercrombie & Fitch next term, Texas Public Radio reported on October 2.

According to Bloomberg, 17-year-old Samantha Elauf applied for a sales job at an Abercrombie store in 2008. Although the assistant manager scored her style points high enough to be hired, the manager’s supervisor claimed that the head scarf did not meet Abercrombie’s look policy, and Elauf was not hired.

A district court ruled that Elauf was discriminated against, but an appeals court reversed that decision. This is not the first religious discrimination case that Abercrombie & Fitch has faced. In 2013, the company fired an employee who wore a hijab and allegedly did not adequately conform to the store’s style policy.

If your employer has engaged in any discriminatory behavior towards you in Austin, the experienced employment law attorneys at the The Melton Law Firm may help you fight back. Call our offices at (512) 330-0017 today to learn more.


Cher’s backup dancers file lawsuit citing wrongful termination

Choreographer Kevin Wilson, along with backup dancers Suzanne Easter and Jacquelyn Dowsett Ballinger, filed a wrongful termination lawsuit on September 18 against 68-year-old singer and actress Cherilyn “Cher” Sarkisian due to alleged racial and age discrimination, the Associated Press reported.

Wilson and Easter believe that race was a factor in their dismissal, while Ballinger, 42, alleged that she was fired because of her age. Wilson said while he was employed, Cher told him not to hire any more black dancers because her shows already had “too much color.”

The trio seeks $10 million in damages from the suit.

An employer doesn’t have the privilege to terminate the employment of his workers on a whim; there are rules that need to be followed for a termination to be considered legitimate. If you are working in Austin and you think your termination was unlawful or unjust, contact our attorneys at the The Melton Law Firm by calling (512) 330-0017 today, and learn about your legal options.


Culinaire International forced to pay in discrimination case

Dallas-based catering service Culinaire International has reached a settlement with the United States Department of Justice and agreed to pay $26,460 for allegedly discriminating against employees based on citizenship status, an article on Justice News Flash reported on September 3.

According to a report by The Daily Caller, Culinaire International allegedly mandated employees to produce additional, unnecessary proof of their eligibility to work in the United States.

Culinaire is also set to form a compensation fund to pay those who may have been economic victims of its actions, change its work eligibility verification process, and mandate its management to attend training and seminars on Immigration and Nationality Act anti-discrimination laws.

Any form of discrimination, when it directly interferes with the prospects of an employee to grow in his workplace, is unlawful. If you have experienced this in Austin or other areas of Texas, enlist the legal help of our attorneys at the The Melton Law Firm by calling our offices at (512) 330-0017 today.


Hagemeyer ex-salesman sues company for alleged age discrimination

Harris County resident Odell Hyden sued Hagemeyer North America, Inc., an electrical materials and industrial products distributor, over claims that he was terminated from his position as salesman because of his age, the Southeast Texas Record reported on June 9.

The civil lawsuit, citing age discrimination, was filed in the Southern District Court of Texas Houston Division on May 30. Hyden said in his complaint that he was a salesman at Hagemeyer for over 50 years, but in recent years, he was subjected to negative remarks regarding his age from his supervisors until he was fired from his job on April 3, 2013. His employer fired him for supposed poor performance.

Wrongful termination, which can be characterized by unlawful discrimination, retaliation, or constructive discharge, is punishable by law. Talk to our lawyers at the Austin-based The The Melton Law Firm if you are experiencing a similar situation by dialing (512) 330-0017, and learn how we may advocate for you.

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