Would your organization like to prevent a wrongful termination suit?
Then it should offer discrimination training to the supervisors.
Many wrongful termination law suits evolve from a termination decision that violates discrimination laws. There are a number of laws that protect people in different classes - Title VII, ADA and ADEA for example. These laws mandate that employees cannot be terminated simply because they are of a certain race, color, natural origin, religion or sex. In addition, people with disabilities and of certain ages are protected against termination in many scenarios.
However, there are many supervisors who aren't aware of these laws, simply because their organization has not offered them a thorough discrimination training program. These supervisors may think it is okay to terminate a woman because he or she feels the position is best suited for a man. Or terminate a person in a wheelchair because accommodating him or her in the workplace is extra work for the supervisor. Not only are these terminations unethical and hurtful to employees who may be very valuable to an organization, they are illegal.
Discrimination training provides an opportunity to educate supervisors on the many different laws that supervisor needs to consider before terminating an employee. The discrimination training program should be interactive, offering the employee a chance to really engage with the topic and answer questions related to real-life scenarios. Because retaliation is so prevalent in the workplace, discrimination training should thoroughly cover what is and is not considered retaliation, and when terminating an employee could be considered retaliation.
Finally, discrimination training should cover any specific termination policies the organization may have (and should have!) and how those policies add to the federal and local government laws that are in place.
Wrongful termination suits are expensive and time consuming for any organization. The best way to prevent this legal action is to make sure employees participate in discrimination training and thus, are aware of the laws and guidelines that must be followed in any termination case.
Learn more about disciplinary and termination-related laws.
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