WorkLife Law Blog

WorkLife Law aims to end Family Responsibilities Discrimination, which is employment discrimination against workers who have family caregiving obligations. It includes discrimination against parents of young children, pregnant women, and workers who have aging or sick parents, spouses, or partners.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007


What Are Management Attorneys Saying About FRD?

The Center for WorkLife Law (WLL) works with any and all groups interested in FRD – employees, employers, journalists, legislators, and researchers. For employers, WLL has developed a number of resources, including prevention checklists, key case lists, monthly e-mail alters, and training programs, for employers and their attorneys. A rapidly growing number of management-side attorneys and human resources consultants have begun advising employers that a focus on prevention is critical.

In addition to a number of teleconferences sponsored by such groups as Lorman, West LegalEd, ALI-ABA and the Labor & Employment Section of the ABA featuring management employment attorneys’ articles are starting to stream in. One such article, Family Responsibilities Discrimination: Making Room at Work for Family Demands, recently came across my e-mail. The author, Daniel J. Finerty, an attorney at Krukowski & Costello S.C., in Milwaukee, correctly points out the FRD is here to stay. Employees’ family responsibilities have changed dramatically in the last 30 years. Many families are dual income households with both men and women taking responsibilities for child and/or elder care. Accordingly, employers’ views about family and work need to evolve with the times or they will face significant liability for FRD claims. Finerty lays out a number of excellent suggestions for preventing FRD claims that are based on many of the things employers already do to prevent other types of employment claims such as training, modifying existing employment policies and basing decisions on objective criteria.

I am interested in reading more FRD articles written by employers or management employment attorneys and in hearing what employers are doing to prevent FRD in their workplaces. If you are aware of any articles or prevention strategies, please pass them on.

Consuela Pinto
Senior Counsel
Center for WorkLife Law

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