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I'm very interested in this concept of "emotional labor." It is when women, typically, are expected to take care of the people they work with -- whether it is emotionally or by doing the cleaning or organizing duties at the office that are not within their job descriptions. I see it come up with female clients, and I have certainly felt it numerous times myself in my past work life.  

It is touche...

December 29, 2017

A recent op-ed in the New York Times advocates for the imposition of just cause employment to be passed as part of any employment reform legislation. I explain the concepts of employment-at-will and its opposite, just cause employment, to prospective clients all the time so I wanted to take the opportunity to explain it here in the wake of this op-ed

The default employment relationship in Massachuset...

December 27, 2017

Former federal District Court judge Nancy Gertner submitted a column in a recent edition of Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly (subscription required) about the current #MeToo movement. I'd like to pull out some points she made in her piece. But before diving in, it is important to note that prior to being elevated to the federal bench in the 1990s, Gertner herself worked as a civil rights and criminal defe...

March 31, 2017

A new study out from Pew provides some insights about Americans' caregiving as relates to their jobs. 

Some of the findings: 

  • About one-in-four Americans (23%) say they have taken leave from work to care for a family member with a serious health condition. 

  • Four-in-ten of the family-leave takers, however, say they took less time off than they needed or wanted to.

  • 60% of those who took fami...

February 28, 2017

Last week, I was reviewing a sex discrimination and sexual harassment case out of the First Circuit and it struck me for several reasons, including because it speaks to the myth that bad employment outcomes never happen to good performers. I call this the good worker myth.

What do I mean? 

Let's review the facts of this particular case. In the words of the First Circuit:

This case arises from plaintiff K...

January 17, 2017

The federal US Department of Labor (USDOL) recently settled a matter with the employer LexisNexis Risk Solutions where after an investigation, they determined there was "a significant difference" paid to women verses men in the same role at two separate company locations. 


According to a USDOL press release

Two separate investigations by the US Department of Labor’s Office of Fede...

December 27, 2016

Yes. 

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the federal agency responsible for enforcing the employment discrimination laws, recently won a jury trial in Chicago where this was an issue.

 A woman worked on the floor at Cosco when she began to be harassed and stalked by a customer at work. What did the customer do? She said

she was subjected to harassing behavior by a customer for more tha...

December 22, 2016

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) -- the federal agency responsible for enforcing employment discrimination laws -- recently resolved a case in which a manager said the above to Cassandra Crawford, as the reason she was not promoted and instead her less-qualified male colleague was. 

According to the EEOC -- 

Cassandra Crawford worked in Dimension's patient financial services...

August 30, 2016

The Center for WorkLife Law at the University of California, Hastings, has issued a 2016 "Family Responsibilities Discrimination Litigation Update" regarding employment cases brought by caregivers. The report analyzed 4,400 cases of family responsibilities discrimination to determine recent trends. 

First, an excerpt from the report about what constitutes family responsibilities or caregiver...

August 1, 2016

Governor Baker has signed the legislation that amends the current Massachusetts Equal Pay Law, M.G.L. c. 149, s. 105A.

But, you may ask, I thought it already was illegal not to pay men and women the same for the same job? 

It is. What this legislation does, among other things, is to make it illegal to pay men and women differently for "comparable work” -- not just the same job. Comparable work here...

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