Skip to comments.Supreme Court says people must be able to hire and fire to be considered a supervisor
Posted on 06/24/2013 7:18:36 AM PDT by SMGFan
WASHINGTON The Supreme Court says people must be able to hire and fire people to be considered a supervisor in a discrimination lawsuit.
(Excerpt) Read more at washingtonpost.com ...
Was is it not the job of a manager to do so?
In a position of authority.
BIG impact on low-level managers in retail chains and the like who are considered Salaried Exempt, I take it?
Either the court has four idiots or there are some serious philosophical differences regarding the constitution surfacing in their decisions.
Sounds like a goofy ruling. Sounds like the Supreme Court needs Supervisors of their own.
Seems like a rather short-sighted and rigid definition that will lead to weird and/or unfortunate results in future cases.
Not just retail - I’d have to go up two levels of “supervisors” to get to someone that could fire me, and I imagine that’s true of many organizations.
The problem is that I imagine my supervisor could make a RECOMMENDATION to fire me - does that count?
What idiocy that we have the USSC legislating the minutiae of who’s a supervisor. I actually would take the term ‘supervisor’ to include those who have day-to-day managerial responsibilities, but not the authority to hire or fire.
Pretty interesting coming from people who have a lifetime job.
I agree with the decision myself. Part of the reason is that I like it when they err on the side of the employer. I’ve seen too many really bad employees successfully sue to get their jobs back. And it is not lost on me that every single one of them was black. White employees are less likely to do that. Frankly, if I’m fired by a manager that is clearly discriminating I go work for someone else.
I believe employers should have the right to fire you because you remind them of their ex-spouse. It’s their company. And I have the right to seek employment somewhere else if my boss reminds ME of MY ex-spouse. Completely fair.
This is the way it would work in a free market, anyway.
This will affect sexual harassment laws.
Nobody in the Federal Gov. ever gets fired.
"Workers Rights groups" are focusing hard on this case, by the way... and are very unhappy with the result... so I guess it can't be an entirely bad thing.
Dittos to both of you.
Does anyone know the breakdown of the vote? Were the majority conservative Justices?
I think it is laughable the number of times that the black woman calls her job (amongst mostly whites) “a living hell” and “torment”, when the primary complaint is that she was often assigned to do “menial tasks” like chopping veggies rather than the nicer jobs of food prep and serving. (She also alleges lots of arguments and epithets, but I’d bet a bag of donuts that she was the instigator in most cases.)
Yea it sure will.
A whole lot of phony claims of racial, or sexual harassment will never get to court since the employer can’t be held liable.
What a shame.
I disagree. I’ve been a supervisor and have had supervisors over me. But supervisors do not hire and fire. That’s what managers are for.
This is basic Business 101. And no silly SCOTUS ruling can change years of fundamental business hierarchies.
“The court, dividing along ideological lines, said people qualify as supervisors only if they can take tangible employment actions against the alleged victim.
The issue is an important one because employers are generally liable for racial and sexual harassment by supervisors. Workers file more than 30,000 formal harassment complaints with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission each year.” http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-06-24/job-supervisor-harassment-suits-limited-by-u-s-supreme-court.html
As a supervisor for a department in my company, I find this interesting. We have a pretty rigid standard about firing people. Ironclad documentation is a requirement. I, personally, do not have the authority to fire people on my own. I have to take it to MY manager, who then takes it to HR, who initiates the process.
The reason the documentation is so important is so the person can’t come back and sue us for their job back OR claim unemployment. One person last year did try to claim unemployment after being fired. There was one bit of paperwork that was overlooked and that caused the state to award the employee with unemployment bennies. (Side note: Yes, the person in question was one of ‘Holder’s people’.)
I’m thinking of forwarding the article about this decision to my HR director. I wonder what he thinks of it, and if it affects me at all.
Yep. Why this case ever reached the Supreme Court is beyond me.
Every business is FULL of managers that do not have the authority to hire a person or to fire a person.
A whole lot of phony claims of racial, or sexual harassment will never get to court since the employer cant be held liable.
What a shame.
So now doing your job is harassment and punishment.
However, you're almost certainly correct... Miss Vance (and her attorneys) are likely crummy people who are looking for an unearned lottery payout based on over-playing the Race Card (tm),
As an amateur chef I would reserve the right to even preclude somebody from chopping my veggies if warranted.
Oh, in my early days I spent full shifts busing tables and washing dishes and came home smelling like stale ice cream.
I had an idiot on my crew complain to the office that I was a racist.
The office went into a full witch hunt to find out if I was a racist, calling in each guy on my crew to question them separately.
Finally got around to calling me in to question me.
I asked what it was that I had done that was supposed to be racist.
The office never bothered to ask the guy making the claim all he had to do was say I was a racist.
I told the office they could tell me what it was I was supposed to have done that made me a racist or I was walking.
The supervisor left and went and talked to the guy making the claim. When he came back he said the complaint was dropped and it was settled.
I didn’t drop it. I told him to tell me what it was I was supposed to have said or done or I was walking.
Turns out the guy claimed I was a racist because I wouldn’t let him sleep on the job.
It was his first day and HE BE TIRED so I should have let him sleep.
My stepson, who doesn’t have a racist bone in his body, had finally had it with some of the folks he works with. He said to me, one day, “why is it that black people always seem to have some scam going on the job?”
Every guy he knew that overtly tried to abuse the system and get out of doing work or get paid for time when they were not there was black. Every. Single. One.
It really left a bad taste for him.
Where my wife worked there were a surprising number of people fired over the years she was there. Every one of them deserved it. Three of them took the company to court over it. All three were black and all three lost. It was ridiculous. They were all TERRIBLE employees and broke clear and important company rules with impunity.
Nothing stops them from suing the individual(s) for claims of racial or sexual harassment if it actually happens.
It takes away the incentive for the phony claims looking for a settlement from the business.
so the law uses the word “supervisor” instead of “manager” so SCOTUS must pretzel itself to make it all work?
Nice to hear that the Supreme Court has settled ail the big questions and have time for something like this.
Now, what have they decided on which are acceptable colors for a company lunchroom?
” why is it that black people always seem to have some scam going on the job?”
I had one start on my crew, first day on the job wanted to get hurt so he could be put on lie duty and get paid for 50 hours without working.
He picked up the end of a joint of 2/38” tubing and dropped it on his hand thinking it was only going to bruise his hand.
Broke his finger instead.
Wanted me to take him to the doctor.
I told him he broke it on purpose so if he wanted to go to the doctor he could quit and walk to the doctor. That was about 8:00 or 8:30.
We stopped for lunch about 1:30 or 2:00 and I took him to the doctor.
First and last person ever tried that stunt on my crew.
The washpost headline is not entirely accurate. The Court decided that an employee is a supervisor for purposes of vicarious liability under Title VII only if he or she is empowered by the employer to take tangible employment actions against the victim and the Court defines “tangible employment action” to include actions that involve a “significant change in employment status, such as hiring, firing, failing to promote, reassignment with significantly different responsibilities, or a decision causing a significant change in benefits.”
This will turn government supervisor’s upside down. Currently if you have a “supervisor” it is in a duty section, branch, department, center, etc. This ruling would on the surface make only the Human Resources Office a supervisor - no wonder government is unaccountable.
NOW they tell me!
I think this is aimed at companies like WalMart who give certain employees management titles and then make them Salaried Exempt so they can work them over 40 hours per week without paying overtime.
The Court appears to be saying if you don’t actually have the power to hire and fire they can’t classify you this way.
But can the SC so define ‘supervisor’ for that narrow purpose and not have it pertain in others?
It has long been codified in federal regulations that someone must be capable of hiring and firing before they can be called a manager. Sadly, most corporations fail to allow “managers” to hire or fire.
All this decision does is support that regulation.
The sad thing is that the plaintiff in the original case did not bring up the matter that the employer was ultimately responsible regardless of who was harassing her. The plaintiff’s lawyer wasn’t too bright.
But they believe they can, after all they are our Black-Robed god-Kings, able to bend even the Constitution that gives them authority to their twisted wills.
Why should federal regulations apply to some private entity (i.e. someone not part of the federal government)?
It shouldn’t. The regulation was in place because the EEOC rules stated there were to be different regulations depending on the superior person’s position if they were performing acts against the EOEOC regs. So, they tried to define a manager. They also define an executive, hourly, etc.
This is nothing but government intrusion where it has no right to be. Nothing in the Constitution allows government regulation of employment. Employment was always at-will for both sides If an employer treated someone badly word got out and they found it difficult to hire anyone.
I wonder how many companies will change the title of “supervisor”, to “Group Leader”.
“Sounds like a goofy ruling. Sounds like the Supreme Court needs Supervisors of their own.”
They do — the NSA and dear leader.
I think the point is that a ‘victim’ must now at least inform a hiring/firing management person is made aware of the complaint of the harassment and given an opportunity to fix the problem first before suing.
“I wonder how many companies will change the title of supervisor, to Group Leader.”
People read the decision wrong, or not at all. The court didn’t define the term ‘supervisor’. They upheld that a person that could hire and fire was considered a ‘manager’ so EEOC rules would apply differently to that position. That’s all they did.