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Supreme Court rules on employment discrimination

Supreme Court decisions may be very close and yet they typically have a far reaching impact on people all across the country including Colorado. A recent 5-4 ruling is set to impact a large number of employers and employees. The case and ruling pertain to employment discrimination.

The case to came to the court as an African American woman working at Ball State University brought forth suit alleging racial discrimination from her supervisors. A lower court and then the Supreme Court of the United States hand to essentially define or re-define the term supervisor. The court agreed with a lower ruling that a the term supervisor could only apply to a person who could promote, fire, hire, discipline or transfer employees.

The ruling affected the woman's particular case because the parties defined in her suit did not fit this legal description of a supervisor. This means employment discrimination suits can only be brought against those who fit the definition of supervisor according to the court’s ruling. Those who were against the close decision stated that the decision seemed out of touch with how the workplace truly is.

Employment discrimination can present itself in a wide variety of forms. Colorado employers and employees may want to learn more about who can and who can't be held accountable for discrimination in court. Discrimination in the workplace can adversely affect the employees ability to do their job or advance in their position. It can also adversely affect the stability of a work place overall.

Source: USA Today, "Justices narrow scope for workplace discrimination," June 24, 2013

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