Labor: 3 exceptions to a sacred HR rule

Treating employees fairly does not always mean treating them the same

In my last post, I discussed three circumstances when an employer can avoid Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) violations by ignoring its instincts and asking personal questions of employees. Today, I will discuss three exceptions to perhaps the most sacred of all human resources rules: Treat all employees the same.

 1.      The Americans with Disabilities Act may require preferential treatment

Like the ADA, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII) requires employers to provide “religious accommodation” to employees, which may prevent employers from enforcing certain policies against employees whose religion forbids them from complying with those policies. And, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission specifically has stated that a “no beards” policy may violate Title VII if its effect is to adversely impact the employment opportunities of African-American men, who are more prone to a skin condition that causes severe razor bumps.

 3.      The escalator reinstatement principle of military leave

Contributing Author

author image

Craig Oliver

Craig Oliver is a partner with Bradley Arant Boult Cummings LLP (Nashville, Tenn.) and serves as vice-chair of the firm’s Labor and Employment Practice. His...

Bio and more articles

Join the Conversation

Advertisement. Closing in 15 seconds.