When we address the topic of Employment Practices Liability with our Staffing Firm clients, we are often told, "that won't happen to me." Dominique Renaud, an authorized ASAC agent at Houston Business Insurance Agency, Inc. recently did some research on this topic and found that it can happen to anybody and everybody. So we again ask the questions, "Do you know your Ultimate Cost of Risk today and what are you doing to reduce your UCOR for tomorrow?"
RELIGIOUS DISCRIMINATION: A former employee of a temporary agency sued her former employer, alleging that she was denied a promotion to manager because she was not a member of a particular religious group that predominated at the company. She claimed that a member of the religious group received the promotion even though the plaintiff had six years more experience and an MBA (unlike the woman who received the position). A jury awarded $647,174 in pain and suffering and $5,900,000 in punitive damages.
NATIONAL ORIGIN DISCRIMINATION AND RETALIATION: The EEOC sued the temporary agency and its client because the client directed the agency to fire 13 employees because of their national origin and five other employees as retaliation for being friends with an employee who had threatened to file a complaint with the EEOC. The parties settled, with the client paying $456,000 and the temporary agency paying $144,000.
SEX/RACE DISCRIMINATION: The EEOC sued a temporary staffing agency for unlawfully coding applicants by race and gender in compliance with its clients’ requests that only employees of a certain race or gender be submitted for consideration. The parties settled, with the defendant agreeing to pay $285,000 and three of its clients paying $50,000 in administrative costs.
AGE/DISABILITY/NATIONAL ORIGIN/RACE/SEX DISCRIMINATION: The EEOC sued a temporary employment agency for allegedly engaging in the following discriminatory actions. First, that the agency complied with its clients’ requests not to refer applicants who were racial minorities or women. Second, that the agency screened out applicants with disabilities by forcing them to fill out a “medical questionnaire” requesting disclosure of such disabilities. Third, that the agency terminated an employee because of her pregnancy. Fourth, that the agency retaliated against an employee who questioned the company’s discriminatory policy against people with disabilities. Fifth, that the agency failed to refer older workers to its clients. After the EEOC sued the clients for making the discriminatory requests, the temporary agency settled for $500,000 and two of the clients of the temporary agency agreed to pay $80,000.
Do you want to get a competitive edge in the Staffing Industry? Talk to an ASAC agent to see if you qualify for acceptance into a program that can generate new top line revenue for your firm while giving you the tools to significantly reduce your UCOR. In Texas, feel free to call Dominique Renaud of Houston Business Insurance Agency, Inc. at 713-979-1001. For other states, please call ASAC at 313-881-8069, and ask for the contact information in your state.