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Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964

This law prevents discriminationagainst employees on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, or national origin. Employers are subject to this law if they have at least 15 employees for each working day in each of twenty or more calendar weeks in the current or preceding calendar year.

Title VII is applicable to private employers, State and Local governments, and educational institutions. In determining an employment relationship with any of these entities, the courts look primarily to whether the individual in question appears on the employer’s payroll.

Title VIII has anti-discriminationand anti-retaliation provisions that make it unlawful for an employer to discriminate or retaliate against any of its employees for filing complaints of discrimination. According to Title VIIof the Civil Rights Act Unlawful Employment Practices Section, it is an unlawful employment practice for an employer or employment agency to discriminate against individuals regarding hiring and discharge processes in any of several categories including race, color, religion, sex, national origin, compensation, terms, conditions, etc.

When a charge is filed for an individual that claims an unlawful employment practice such as discriminationhas occurred, the EEOCwill notify the employer of the charge within 10 days and conduct an investigation. The notice includes the date, location, and details of the alleged unlawful employment action as reported. The EEOC may dismiss the charge after its investigation without proof of reasonable cause. If the EEOC finds reason for the validity of the charges, they will get involved to eliminate the unlawful employment practice by voluntary means between the parties. If voluntary actions are not successful, the EEOC may file a Federal lawsuit.

The plaintiff may file a private suit on his or her own if the EEOCprovides a right-to-sue-notice. Mediation is another option which may be taken through the EEOC to possibly resolve the situation. In the midst of the EEOC’s activities, they may work with State and Local Fair Employment Practices Agencies (FEPAs) responsible for State and Local fair employment laws. There are several avenues for discrimination charges to be filed under Federal, State, and Local laws by the EEOC and the FEPAs.

FAST FACT

In FY2002, 30 percent of employers offered mediation in dispute resolution, and 83 percent of those charging parties agreed to participate in the EEOC mediation process.

   - EEOC FY2002 Office of General Counsel Annual Report
 

Figures 5.1 through 5.7 display information on the resolution of discrimination  charges by type, filed under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 during the period of FY1992 – FY2002.

Figure 5.2 provides data on charge resolutions by Settlements. These negotiated charges are settled with benefits to the claimant based on the evidence. The settlement agreement is reached with either the EEOCor a FEPA, or both.  

Figure 5.3 charts the charge resolutions by Withdrawals with Benefits. This category of charges represents a withdrawal by the claimant upon receipt of the requested benefits. The withdrawal may occur after a settlement or after the guarantee of the requested benefits.

Resolution of charges by Administrative Closures is portrayed in Figure 5.4 and is representative of closures for administrative reasons such as:

  • No response from the claimant to EEOCcommunications.
     

  • Failure to locate the claimant.
     

  • Other litigation establishes precedent that nullifies the case.
     

  • Refusal by the claimant to accept full relief.
     

  • No statutory jurisdiction for the case.
     

  • Withdrawal of the charge by the claimant without receipt of benefits or resolution of the case.

Statistics for charges resolved by No Reasonable Cause are graphed in Figure 5.5. This resolution charge means that there is no reasonable cause to believe that discrimination  has occurred as found by the EEOC.  The claimant may, however, file a private lawsuit.

 has reasonable cause to believe that discriminationhas occurred. The EEOC commonly will pursue subsequent conciliation efforts based on a determination of Reasonable Cause. Reasonable Cause determinations for charge resolutions may be resolved, however, by negotiated settlements, withdrawals with benefits, etc that are not statistically recorded as conciliations (successful or unsuccessful).

Charge Resolutions data by Successful Conciliations is depicted in Figure 5.7, signifying reasonable cause determinations of discrimination that result in successful conciliation.

Statistics for Unsuccessful Conciliations charge resolutions is displayed in Figure 5.8, and indicates reasonable cause determinations of discriminationhat result in unsuccessful conciliation.

The charge resolution data presented in Figures 5.2 through 5.8 as relates to Title VIIof the Civil Rights Act of 1964provides some interesting trends. The resolutions by Settlements graph shows an increase, indicating that more charging parties are winning negotiated settlements with benefits. Apparently more employers are not following the proper practices to avoid discrimination in employment termination and other actions.

Administrative Closures trended downwards, indicating that the charging parties were more adamant, cooperative, and thorough about pressing their claims and following through.

The percentage of charge resolutions by Reasonable Cause was on an upswing during the final years of the reporting period. Again, employers are not learning from the past and not consulting the proper professionals and attorneys to eliminate discriminatory practices.

Another indicator of the trend towards the increased success by charging parties in discriminatory litigation such as wrongful discharge is the amount of monetary benefits received. Figure 5.9 highlights a nearly threefold increase in the monetary benefits received by the charging parties over the period of data collection.

Title VII and the Americans with Disabilities Act(ADA ) require employers to retain records that may determine if unlawful practices are occurring in employment. The records are those related to job applications, offers of employment, demotion, promotion, layoff, termination, transfer, reasonable accommodation, and compensation. These records must be retained by the employer for minimum of one year from the date of inception. In the event that charges are filed against the employer with a State agency or the EEOC all records related to the claim must be retained until the end of the case.


The above book excerpt is from:

You're Fired! Firing Computer Professionals

The IT manager Guide for Terminating "With Cause"

ISBN 0-9744486-4-8

Robert Papaj 

http://www.rampant-books.com/book_2005_1_firing.htm

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