Third Circuit Upholds Disparate Impact Finding

NAACP v. North Hudson Regional Fire & Rescue, Nos. 10-3965, 10-15015 (3 rd Cir. Dec. 12, 2011).

November

Decision on Sex Stereotyping Under Sec. 1983

Glenn v. Brumby, No. 10-14833, 10-15015 (11 th Cir. Dec. 6, 2011).

In a significant opinion, the Eleventh Circuit upholds a plaintiff's Section 1983 claims based upon the Equal Protection Clause against a state government official for firing her based on sexual stereotypes related to gender identity disorder and gender transition.

The published opinion is by Judge Barkett and was joined by Judges Pryor and Kravitch. The attached opinion certainly is significant for transgender issues, but also because of its broad language on sex stereotyping:

November

Court Issues Sanctions for Failure to Preserve Evidence and Failure to Prepare 30(b)(6) Deponent

Naaco Materials Handling Group, Inc. v. Lilly Co., No. 11-2415 AV, 2011 WL 5986649 (W.D. Tenn. Nov. 16, 2011).

November

Ministerial Exception Applies and Precludes ADA Retaliation Claim by Church School Teacher

Hosanna-Tabor v. EEOC, No. 10-553 (U.S. Jan. 2012).

The Supreme Court, in Hosanna-Tabor v. EEOC, reversed the Sixth Circuit - which had held that a teacher (Ms. Perich) at a church school could bring a ADA retaliation claim - and instead held that the religious or ministerial exemption to ADA (similar to that for Title VII) precluded her claims, since the church regarded the teacher as a minister.

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Newsletter - January/February 2012
January

D.C. Circuit Reverses Summary Judgment on Exhausted Discrimination Claim and Retaliation Claim

Hamilton v. Geithner, No. 10-5419 (D.C. Cir. Jan. 17, 2012).

The D.C. Circuit, in a decision by Judge Tatel (joined by Judges Garland and Ginsburg, with no dissent or concurrence), held that Judge Walton erred in granting summary judgment in a Title VII discrimination and retaliation case brought by an IRS employee. Although one discrimination claim was not administratively exhausted, the other discrimination claim - denial of a permanent promotion - was properly before the court. The retaliation claim was remanded for further analysis by the district court.

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Newsletter - January/February 2012
January

Small Firms vs. Large Firms Distinguished in Awarding Fees

Heller v. District of Columbia, No. 2003-CV-0213 (D.D.C. Dec. 29, 2011)

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Newsletter - January/February 2012
January

Maryland Court of Appeals Finds Severe Latex Allergy to be a Protected Disability

Meade v. Shangri-la P'ship, No. 128, Sept. Term 2008 (Md. Jan. 26, 2012).

The Court of Appeals reversing the Court of Special Appeals found that a severe latex allergy was a disability, and reinstated the jury verdict in favor of the Plaintiff. In this case, Lisa Meade, a parent of a 2-year old son, objected to the use of powdered latex gloves at her son’s pre-school due to Ms. Meade’s severe latex allergy. Efforts to get the school to change its practices failed, and Ms. Meade sued for discrimination based on her “handicap”.

Highlights include:

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Newsletter - January/February 2012
January