Publications

Articles on Civil Rights

Employers must give pregnant employees reasonable accommodations

February
2015
Illinois Law Update
Page 18
It is a civil rights violation for an employer to refuse to make reasonable accommodations for pregnant employees. This is true no matter whether the employee is part-time, full-time, or probationary.

The Supreme Court DOMA Ruling, Civil Unions, and Same-Sex Marriage in Illinois

By Ray Prather and Padraig McCoid
September
2013
Article
Page 460
The U.S. Supreme Court's DOMA case opens the door to an array of federal benefits for same-sex married couples. But Illinoisans won't enjoy its full advantages, the authors argue.

Employers may not violate pregnant employees’ civil rights. PA 097-0596.

November
2011
Illinois Law Update
Page 556
The Illinois Human Rights Act has been amended to protect pregnant employees (775 ILCS 5/2-102).

(Asset) Buyer Beware

By Sherwin D. Abrams
December
2010
Column
Page 644
Warning to buyers of going businesses: you may be buying some of your sellers' liabilities.

Employer v. Employee: When Is it Forbidden Retaliation Under Title VII?

By Nicholas P. Cholis
December
2010
Article
Page 636
Does an Illinois employer violate Title VII's anti-retaliation provision by suing a worker who has filed a discrimination claim? Here's a look at this complex question.

EEOC complaints: sender’s fax confirmation “strong evidence” of receipt

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
February
2010
LawPulse
Page 66
The seventh circuit holds that the fax confirmation generated by the sender's machine is strong evidence the EEOC actually received a complaint at a given time and date.

GINA prevents discrimination based on genetic information

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
September
2009
LawPulse
Page 438

Strict Liability for Sexual Harassment by Supervisors

By Cynthia H. Hyndman, Robert Margolis, and Aleeza Strubel
September
2009
Article
Page 454
The Illinois Supreme Court's Sangamon County Sheriff's Department decision subjects employers to strict liability for sexual harassment by their supervisors. So, who is a supervisor?

Sexual harassment and the chain of command

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
June
2009
LawPulse
Page 278
Under state law, employers are liable for sexual harassment by supervisors whether or not the employer knew about it and even though the employee-victim doesn't work under the supervisor.

“Rape Shield” for Civil Lawsuits

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
May
2009
LawPulse
Page 220
An Illinois House bill would extend the prohibition against admitting evidence of an alleged victim's sexual history to sexual harassment charges.

Pleading Civil Rights Claims

By Professor Jeffrey A. Parness
March
2009
Column
Page 156
The challenges civil-rights claimants face in choosing a forum, shaping their pleadings, and more.

llinois Civil Rights Act amended to protect against gender discrimination. PA 0 95-0541

November
2007
Illinois Law Update
Page 576
The Illinois General Assembly has amended Section 5 of the Illinois Civil Rights Act of 2003 to prohibit gender discrimination. 740 ILCS 23/5.

Race-Based School Assignments After Parents Involved in Community Schools

By Mark E. Wojcik
October
2007
Article
Page 526
The Supreme Court struck down a pair of race-based plans for assigning students to public schools. So what kinds of plans do pass constitutional muster?

Slavery reparations claims dismissed by 7CA

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
April
2007
LawPulse
Page 170
The court held that slave descendants' section 1982 claims are, inter alia, too speculative and the claimants too far removed from the wrong of slavery.

The Dream and the Dreamkeeper(s)

By Irene F. Bahr
March
2007
Column
Page 116
Lawyers stand at the gates to challenge tyranny and abuse of power.

Separate but equal grooming standards okayed

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
June
2006
LawPulse
Page 278
Requiring female but not male bartenders to wear makeup does not violate Title VII, the ninth circuit rules. 

What’s crude talk among Friends?

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
June
2006
LawPulse
Page 278
Sexually charged talk in the workplace doesn't always equal sexual harassment, the California Supreme Court says. 

How Illinois’ New Gay Rights Law Affects Employers and Workers

By Bryan P. Cavanaugh
April
2006
Article
Page 182
"Sexual orientation" is now a protected status in the Illinois workplace. Here's what that means for your clients.

Is Your Law Practice ADA Compliant?

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
April
2005
Article
Page 188
Every private practice is a "public accommodation" under the ADA. Are you meeting your obligations to clients and others with disabilities?

Illinois Attorney General may bring actions for civil rights violations PA 093-1017

February
2005
Illinois Law Update
Page 68
Whenever the Illinois Attorney General has reasonable cause to believe a person or group of persons is engaged in a pattern and practice of discrimination prohibited by the Illinois Human Rights Act.

When Are Supervisors Personally Liable for Employment Law Violations?

By Jane M. McFetridge and Grace Hwang Lee
December
2004
Article
Page 628
Can employees recover from a misbehaving supervisor in addition to the company? Sometimes yes, sometimes no.

Civil rights claims under the Illinois Civil Rights Act of 2003 may now be heard in federal courts P.A. 093-0750

September
2004
Illinois Law Update
Page 456
Effective on January 1, 2005, any party aggrieved by conduct that violates the Illinois prohibition on excluding a person from participation in, or denying a person the benefits of, any program or activity on the grounds of that person's race,

All civil rights claims, whether based on federal or state law, shall be prosecuted in an administrative forum, as required by the Illinois Human Rights Act

July
2004
Illinois Law Update
Page 340
On April 12, 2004, the Fifth District Appellate Court held that the Circuit Court of St. Clair County did not have subject matter jurisdiction over an employee's Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) claim.

Brown v Board and the ISBA Board

By Terrence J. Lavin
March
2004
Column
Page 116
Americans are great about celebrating anniversaries. We celebrate the anniversary of heroic or tragic national events. 

Demystifying the USA PATRIOT Act

By William F. Zieske
February
2004
Article
Page 82
Have you wondered what this massive, controversial Act is really all about? Here's a summary and review.

Counseling gay couples

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
November
2003
LawPulse
Page 544
While the issues that arise in gay relationships are familiar, the legal framework is different. It's a difference that family practitioners and estate planners should learn to navigate.

Little-noted Illinois Civil Rights Act takes effect January 1

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
October
2003
LawPulse
Page 486
Among other things, the new law allows attorney-fee awards to prevailing claimants.

Correspondence from Our Readers

June
2003
Column
Page 270
More on "the perniciousness of racism".

A Guide to EEOC Mediations

By Mary B. Manzo
November
2002
Article
Page 607
Pointers about the EEOC program from the Chicago office's ADR coordinator.

Department of Corrections did not violate state Religious Freedom Restoration Act when it confiscated religious pamphlet that contained inflammatory language about correction officers

October
2002
Illinois Law Update
Page 512
On August 13, 2002, the Appellate Court of Illinois, Fifth District, affirmed the ruling of the circuit court of Randolph County, and granted the Illinois Department of Corrections' (DOC) motion to dismiss this case.

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