The Pennsylvania Human Relations Act (“PHRA”) is a state statute prohibiting unlawful discriminatory practices in employment, housing and education in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. The governing and regulating body of the PHRA is the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission (“PHRC”), including regulating employment discrimination matters. This office recently presented a continuing legal education program to lawyers
Second Circuit Decides in Employment Discrimination Case that it is Unlawful to Discriminate on the Basis of Sexual Orientation
Today, the Second Circuit found in an employment discrimination case that it is unlawful to discriminate against an individual based on his or her “sexual orientation” under Title VII. This decision is compelling for civil rights litigators seeking to protect clients from employment discrimination on the basis of their sexual orientation. The Third Circuit has
It is unconstitutional to imprison an individual for failing to pay fines and costs without first holding a court hearing to determine the individual’s ability to pay. If an individual has not paid his or her fines and costs, then courts are still required to hold a hearing to determine whether the individual intentionally failed
The Allegheny County Jail has recently abused the long-standing rule in favor of strip-searching inmates, claiming a security interest exists for such searches. That rule has existed for over a decade based on decisions from the Supreme Court of the United States. Those same rules do not apply for stop-and-frisks outside of the prison walls.
Timothy P. O’Brien was recently invited by WTAE to discuss police transparency in officer-involved shootings. Our office takes the position that, as a general rule, and as citizens, we are entitled to know what our public servants are doing. Of course, there are exceptions to that general rule, but absolute deference should not be given to our
The Supreme Court of the United States held in the seminal case of Garcetti v. Ceballos, 547 U.S. 210 (2006) that a public official may exercise protected freedom of speech only during private speech as part of his or her life as a private citizen, and not during his or her official duties as a public official.
“Excessive force” claims may be litigated pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 as follows: Under the Fourth Amendment for claims arising during arrest; under the Fourteenth Amendment for claims arising during pretrial detention; under the Eighth Amendment for claims arising after conviction. In 2015, the United States Supreme Court in Kingsley v. Hendrickson, 135 S.
Employment discrimination encompasses discrimination based on a person’s disability and making reasonable accommodations for that person’s disability. I. Reasonable Accommodations The Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”) prohibits employers from discriminating against disabled employees. 42 USC § 12112, Taylor v. Phoenixville Sch. Dist., 184 F.3d 296, 306 (3d Cir. Pa. 1999.). A primary goal of the
Last Sunday the Pittsburgh Tribune Review published an extensive profile of our client, Jules Williams. Ms. Williams is a transgender woman who has courageously stepped forward to file a groundbreaking civil rights lawsuit against the Allegheny County Jail (ACJ) challenging its practice of housing transgender women with men. As the story suggests, like many transgender
Issue: Employers are prohibited from discriminating against employees because of race. This article discusses a specific federal statute prohibiting race discrimination in employment, as well as a recently filed case in federal court asserting claims of employment discrimination against three African American employees because of race. Employment discrimination is often attributed to being enforced through