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November 2017 Archives

What is sexual harassment and what are examples of it?

The news is filled with an increasing number of stories about sexual harassment taking place across a wide range of industries with more coming seemingly every day. Iowans who have been subjected to this treatment at work or believe they might have been are undoubtedly paying strict attention to how these allegations are treated. However, it is an ongoing question as to what constitutes sexual harassment and when various behaviors do not meet the criteria of being considered sexual harassment. Knowing whether behavior has reached the threshold of sexual harassment is the first step to seeking compensation in a legal filing.

Am I protected by FMLA to perform military service?

When an Iowan is a close relative to a person who is in the military, the Family and Medical Leave Act has certain provisions that allow a covered employee to use the FMLA leave for issues that are considered qualifying exigencies. This means if it is urgent that a close relative of the employee needs to care for the service member who is suffering from an illness or injury, FMLA is applicable. The close relative must be a son, daughter, parent or next of kin. If there is a violation of this part of FMLA, the person should be aware that it is possible to file a lawsuit against the employer because of it.

Conditions worsened for VA whistleblowers

If we see something going on that is not right or is possibly illegal, we have the urge to speak out or report it. While it is in our nature to do what we believe is right, taking these steps in the workplace could unfortunately lead to difficult situations. If an employer discovers that you have reports unlawful conduct or procedures in the workplace, this might lead to retaliation such as a demotion or termination. However, such acts are considered illegal and in violation of whistleblower protection laws.

Lactating and breastfeeding mothers face workplace discrimination

Working women have long faced discrimination related to reproduction. Employers may ask about children, pregnancy or plans to have kids in an interview (despite it being illegal). Managers may refuse to accommodate basic medical needs during pregnancy, like reduced lifting. Some businesses go out of their way to find ways to terminate a worker once they discover a pregnancy.

Understanding what constitutes a FMLA violation

Life is filled with many surprises and various ups and downs. While these events are just the natural parts of life, employees in Iowa and elsewhere might find it difficult to maintain a regular work schedule in order to address these life events appropriately. Because of that, the Family and Medical Leave Act provides for employees deemed eligible to take unpaid, job-protected leave for certain family and medical situations.