Publications

Section Newsletter Articles on Discrimination

Illinois Human Rights Commission decision summaries By Laura D. Mruk Labor and Employment Law, October 2013 Recent cases of interest to employment law practitioners.
Civil Rights Act decisions may limit workers’ ability to sue for discrimination By Tracy Douglas Labor and Employment Law, September 2013 In a pair of 5-4 decisions this past June, the Supreme Court limited the definition of supervisor and increased the standard of causation for retaliation under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act.
Civil Rights Act decisions may limit workers’ ability to sue for discrimination By Tracy Douglas Women and the Law, August 2013 In a pair of 5-4 decisions this past June, the Supreme Court limited the definition of supervisor and increased the standard of causation for retaliation under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act.
Otto May, Jr. v. Chrysler Group LLC: Anatomy of the largest employment discrimination verdict in Illinois history By Stephen E. Balogh Labor and Employment Law, August 2013 Regardless of how and when this lawsuit finally resolves, it remains that the Clerk of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois has anecdotally informed the district judge and the parties that the verdict entered by the jury of eight people in the courtroom in Rockford, Illinois, on September 2, 2009, stands as the largest award in a single-plaintiff employment discrimination case in any district court in Illinois.
Tips prior to filing discrimination cases in federal court By Peter LaSorsa Federal Civil Practice, December 2012 The author provides his strategies for pursuing a sexual harassment case in federal court.
Not all majority opinion assignment systems are equal By Hon. Michael B. Hyman Bench and Bar, June 2012 The Illinois Supreme Court has long followed a rotation system in assigning majority opinions, which a recent study called “most effective in promoting race and gender equality in opinion-writing assignments.”
Plaintiff’s challenge to employer’s light duty policy fails By Michael R. Lied Labor and Employment Law, June 2012 Serednyj v. Beverly Healthcare, LLC, 656 F.3d 540 (7th Cir. 2011), involved claims of gender discrimination under Title VII, The Pregnancy Discrimination Act, (“PDA”), disability discrimination under the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”), and retaliation.
Human resources director allegedly makes admissions of discrimination and retaliation By Michael R. Lied Labor and Employment Law, March 2012 A summary of the recent case of Makowski v. SmithAmundsen LLC.
Update: Against the best interest of children: Religious discrimination, civil unions, foster care and adoption By Linda S. Coon Child Law, November 2011 A discussion of the reasons for the ISBA Child Law Legislation Subcommittee's opposition to a bill in the Illinois Senate that would have amended the Civil Union Act to allow "religious child welfare agencies" to discriminate under some circumstances.
Court rejects employee’s discrimination and retaliation claims By Michael R. Lied Labor and Employment Law, October 2011 The court of appeals wrote that no reasonable jury could find that the delivery of a verbal warning, based on a complaint from a coworker, constituted an adverse employment action or created an objectively hostile work environment.
ISBA Assembly supports U.S. ratification of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW)—What happens next? By Annemarie E. Kill Diversity Leadership Council, June 2011 The ISBA has taken a lead as one of the few bar associations to pass a formal resolution in support of CEDAW.
Motor carrier defeats HIV-positive driver’s ADA and related claims By William D. Brejcha Energy, Utilities, Telecommunications, and Transportation, June 2011 The case of EEOC v. C.R. England, Inc. will be helpful to motor carriers and others as it answers some fundamental questions that arise from the ADA statute which have not been previously addressed in detail by the courts.
Title II of GINA and the EEOC regulations By Ambrose V. McCall Labor and Employment Law, June 2011 A brief overview of some of the legislative and regulatory highlights of the Genetic Information Non-Discrimination Act.
Mid-Year Assembly votes to support CEDAW By Julie A. Neubauer Women and the Law, April 2011 The ISBA Assembly voted overwhelmingly, but not unanimously, to stand in support of the US ratification of CEDAW.
Plaintiff’s uncorroborated testimony wards off summary judgment By Michael R. Lied Labor and Employment Law, March 2011 If based on personal knowledge or experience, uncorroborated testimony can create disputed material facts. Courts at summary judgment stage should not weigh the evidence or determine the credibility of the testimony; those tasks are for the fact finder.
The Supreme Court and retaliation in the “zone of interests”: Thompson v. North American Stainless By Stephen E. Balogh and Adam B.E. Lied Labor and Employment Law, March 2011 Thompson filed a retaliation claim against his employer, American Stainless, alleging that he had been fired in retaliation because his fiance, also employed by American Stainless, had complained about sex discrimination.
Fiscal Bite & Breed Discrimination: Utilizing Scientific Advances & Economic Tools in Lobbying, Part III By Ledy VanKavage and John Dunham Animal Law, December 2010 The majority of breed-discriminatory laws result from high-profile dog bites or attacks.
In-sites Government Lawyers, December 2010 A listing of Web sites relating to non-discrimination laws.
Fiscal bite & breed discrimination: Utilizing scientific advances & economic tools in lobbying, Part II By Ledy VanKavage and John Dunham Animal Law, November 2010 The majority of breed-discriminatory laws result from high-profile dog bites or attacks.
The CEDAW debate By Mark E. Wojcik Human Rights, October 2010 The question of whether the ISBA should support ratification of CEDAW (Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women) is slated to come before the ISBA Assembly on Saturday morning, December 11, 2010. The proceedings are open to all ISBA members and other members of the public.
Workplace discrimination: A primer on gathering evidence By Peter LaSorsa Human Rights, October 2010 A look at what types of evidence may exist in workplace discrimination cases and how best to obtain that evidence.
Representing gender-variant people in claims of employment discrimination by private employers By Joanie Rae Wimmer Labor and Employment Law, July 2010 The law in this area is rapidly developing and in flux. And because of applicable fee-shifting statutes, representing gender variant people in employment discrimination claims is an opportunity for Illinois practitioners both to work in an exciting and developing area of the law, and, to be compensated adequately for their work.
Fiscal bite & breed discrimination: Utilizing scientific advances & economic tools in lobbying, Part I By Ledy VanKavage and John Dunham Animal Law, June 2010 The majority of breed-discriminatory laws result from high-profile dog bites or attacks.
Common-law tort and federal anti-discrimination claims not preempted by Illinois Human Rights Act By Michael R. Lied Labor and Employment Law, January 2010 The Illinois Supreme Court reversed the judgment of the appellate court, and remanded to the appellate court to consider defendant’s other claims of error. 
The City of Chicago renews its commitment to minority and women-owned businesses By Daniel R. Saeedi Racial and Ethnic Minorities and the Law, November 2009 The City of Chicago has recently renewed its Minority and Women Business Enterprise Program, an affirmative action program in construction with goals for awarding 24% of City construction contracts to Minority-owned Business Enterprises and 4% to Women-owned Business Enterprises. 
How far have we come in eradicating discrimination in our profession and what is the blueprint for the future? By Sharon L. Eiseman Racial and Ethnic Minorities and the Law, November 2009 Like any occupation, the legal profession has not been immune from workplace problems like discrimination, hostile environment, harassment and retaliation
Civility and religious sensitivity By Andrea M. Schleifer Bench and Bar, April 2009 Almost 75 years ago, the Decalogue Society of Lawyers was created to among other things, confront anti-Semitism and discrimination encountered by Jewish attorneys in the Courts. Unfortunately, at that time, many judges would knowingly schedule trials on Jewish holidays without compunction. That rarely happens today, when most judges respect the religious requirements of litigants and lawyers.
Employer loses insurance coverage for failure to timely report a claim of discrimination By Michael R. Lied Labor and Employment Law, September 2008 The lesson here? Read your policy requirements. Arrowood Indemnity Co. refused to defend Westrec Marine Management Co., because Westrec failed to timely report a claim of discrimination.
Employers beware: Illinois gives employees ticket to take discrimination claims to state court By Ellen M. Girard Corporate Law Departments, February 2008 Major amendments to the Illinois Human Rights Act (“Act”) will give complainants the choice of taking their Illinois Department of Human Rights (“IDHR”) charges on to Illinois circuit courts – regardless of the outcome at the IDHR. Previously, complainants could only proceed before the Illinois Human Rights Commission (the “Commission”) – but only in cases where the IDHR found substantial evidence or did not timely complete its investigation.
Sexual orientation discrimination in the workplace By James E. Snyder and Hon. Reva S. Bauch Labor and Employment Law, June 2007 Imagine being called into your employer’s boardroom and being told: “You’re a great employee, but you’re gay, so...you’re fired!” Federal law does not prohibit this kind of conduct by the employer. And in 33 states it is not an unlawful employment practice.