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Birmingham Bar Associations Bulletin Summer 2015

Employment Law 2. Written Employment Rules and Policies Provide “Consistency, Consistency, Consistency” an EEOC charge. If an employer has well-constructed policies regarding discipline, promotions, tardiness, sick leave, vacation and personal leave to name just a few, and actually follows these policies, inconsistent treatment among employees will be curtailed. The employee handbook provides the employer with an “out” for consistent treatment and decreases the chances that the employer will “forgive” a favorite or senior employee. For example, if an employer’s policy states that five tardies in three months will result in a one-week unpaid suspension and if it is applied consistently, the employer’s workforce will know what to expect and understand that there are no exceptions for certain employees, such as caucasians or women. Further, employers should have at least several “zero tolerance” policies in their employee manuals or handbooks such as a “no violence in the workplace” policy or a “no theft” policy wherein the penalty is immediate termination. Also, an employee handbook does not need to be all “rules and punishment;” it can also serve to communicate rewards to superior employees with guidelines related to bonuses, vacation carryover, internal recruiting and promotion, and notices regarding employee programs such as reduced membership fees. If you are an employer and have consulted an employment lawyer even once, you have heard the phrase, “consistency, consistency, consistency.” Of the more than 85,000 EEOC charges alleging discrimination based on race, age, religion, color, sex, disability, national origin or retaliation filed in 2014 alone, most dealt with one employee believing or experiencing inconsistent treatment as compared to a co-worker. Most workplace disputes or morale problems arise from the employee’s belief that he or she is not being treated fairly or consistently as compared to a co-worker. Again, the employee handbook, if utilized, can reduce the chances of receiving Stronger. Faster. Competitive. ADVERTISER: C. BURRELL LAW GROUP SALES PERSON: Rebecca Garner CREATED BY: SHEILAS NEXT RUN DATE: 04/08/14 PUBLICATION: SPEC ADS SIZE: 4.875” col X 7.5” in With over 50 years of experience, GilsbarPRO is the exclusive administrator for the CNA Lawyers Professional Liability Program in the State of Alabama. CNA is the largest underwriter of lawyers malpractice insurance in the United States and is A-rated by A.M. Best. This combination is your best alternative for peace of mind in today’s challenging environment. Expect NALo-tShPAinD0g4 0L80e9s5s64. 1.INDD Call The PROs Today. 800.906.9654 • gilsbarpro.com One or more of the CNA insurance companies provide the products and/or services described. The information is intended to present a general overview for illustrative purposes only. It is not intended to constitute a binding contract. Please remember that only the relevant insurance policy can provide the actual terms, coverages, amounts, conditions and exclusions for an insured. All products and services are subject to change without notice. CNA is a registered trademark of CNA Financial Corporation. Copyright (c) 2013 CNA. All rights reserved. Birmingham Bar Bulletin/ Summer 2015 33


Birmingham Bar Associations Bulletin Summer 2015
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