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They can’t all begin with a priest, minister and a rabbi walking into a bar. Then again, it’s “Religious Accommodation Tuesday” here at The Employer Handbook. So, after the jump, we’ll discuss the test to determine whether an employee may lawfully don religious items at work and find out whether the hospital worker in this case has a potential religious discrimination claim (Hint: he does).

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Coal Miners MemorialYesterday, Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-W.Va.) reintroduced, for a third time, the “Robert C. Byrd Mine and Workplace Safety and Health Act,” which would amend the Mine Safety and Health Act.

What does this bill say (CliffsNotes version)? And what are the chances of passage? Find out after the jump…

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Fact or Fiction?That’s right folks. It’s time for another edition of “Fact or Fiction” a/k/a “Quick Answers to Quick Questions” a/k/a QATQQ f/k/a “I don’t feel like writing a long blog post.”

Under the Americans with Disabilities Act, an employer is required to provide a reasonable accommodation, if doing so will allow a disabled employee to perform the essential functions of his job. Could this mean having to create a brand new position for a disabled employee?

Nope. A federal appellate court underscored this last week (opinion here) when if affirmed a lower-court decision to dismiss a plaintiff’s claims under the ADA that his former employer had failed to accommodate his disability:

What if I told you that a female black employee was called “monkey” and “nappy head Raggedy Ann” at work?

What if I then told you that the employee subsequently sued in New Jersey state court; quite possibly the most plaintiff-friendly jurisdiction in the U.S. — next to California?

And guess what? She lost. Oh my!

What the heck happened and what can employers learn from this recent decision? Find out after the jump…

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Ric FlairOn behalf of an illiterate man, the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) investigated a Charge of Discrimination against a MD employer, which allegedly had a literacy policy that violated the Americans with Disabilities Act (by discriminating against qualified individuals with learning disabilities). As part of its investigation, the EEOC served an extremely broad subpoena on the employer. The employer fought the subpoena hard. Ultimately; however, it learned that the EEOC has the power.

You’ll learn too (and figure out why this post has a picture of Ric Flair)…after the jump…

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The July edition of the Employment Law Blog Carnival is now up and running. You can view it here. Thank you to all who contributed. And a special thank you to Heather Bussing and HRExaminer.com for hosting.

If you would like to participate in future carnivals, email me and I will add you to the distribution list. Participants must be bloggers (so we can link to your blog) and Carnival posts must be HR/employment-law-related. And you must like dill pickles.

Dill, damnit!

In the world of Human Resources, “hire slow, fire fast” generally holds true to avoid just about any lawsuit.

Unfortunately, for one NJ employer, it didn’t get the memo. And now it finds itself having to defend against FMLA interference and retaliation claims at trial.

What did this employer do wrong and how can you avoid making the same mistake? Find out after the jump…

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“Doing What’s Right – Not Just What’s Legal”