Michelle Hoogendam Cash and Frank A. King 2017-02-27 12:16:45
Tracking the expansion of protections for employees. Employees are protected from retaliation by a variety of federal and state employment laws as well as statutes relating to consumer protection, health and safety, corporate governance, whistleblower claims, and trade secrets, to name only a few.1 Unlike other types of employment law claims, retaliation claims have found support at the trial and appellate court levels. What follows is a chart listing examples of the different types of activity that are protected from retaliation. It is by no means exhaustive, however, as the protections from retaliation are numerous and growing.2 NOTES 1.) The number of retaliation claims under all statutes filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has more than doubled in the past 18 years—from just over 18,000 in 1997 to almost 40,000 in 2015. Charge Statistics FY 1997 Through FY 2015, EEOC https://www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/statistics/enforcement/charges.cfm. Recently, the EEOC updated its compliance manual and guidance on retaliation claims. See Enforcement Guidance on Retaliation and Related Issues, EEOC https://www.eeoc.gov/laws/guidance/retaliation-guidance.cfm. 2.) The Occupational Safety and Health Administration is responsible for investigating claims of whistleblowers under recent statutes, and OSHA has published a chart describing many of those claims. See Occupational Safety and Health Administration Directorate of Whistleblower Protection Programs Whistleblower Statutes Desk Aid, https://www.whistleblowers.gov/whistleblower_acts-desk_reference.pdf. Examples include the Asbestos Hazard Emergency Response Act, 15 U.S.C. § 2651, the Surface Transportation Assistance Act, 49 U.S.C § 31105, the Clean Air Act, 42 U.S.C. § 7622, and many others. MICHELLE HOOGENDAM CASH practices and mediates exclusively in the area of employment law and has been certified in labor and employment law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization since 1995. Her law firm is based in Houston. FRANK A. KING has been assistant attorney general V in the general litigation division of the Texas Office of Attorney General since 2007. He specializes in civil trial law defending Texas state agencies and universities in employment disputes, discrimination litigation, torts and constitutional challenges to statutes, and appeals before all state appellate courts in Texas and the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals.
Published by State Bar of Texas. View All Articles.
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