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Calif.: Employees Requesting Accommodation Are Now Protected

7.23.15

Lizbeth Ochoa’s article “Calif.: Employees Requesting Accommodation Are Now Protected” was featured in SHRM on July 23, 2015.

On July 16, 2015, Gov. Brown signed into law AB 987, amending the California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) to reflect what many already believed to be the law: employers and other covered entities cannot retaliate against employees or other persons who request a religious accommodation or an accommodation for a disability. Effective on Jan. 1, 2016, AB 987 establishes that requesting such an accommodation is a protected activity under the FEHA, regardless of whether the accommodation is granted.

In the article, Lizbeth discusses how this new law overturned the Rope v. Auto-Chlor System of Washington Inc case and what this means for employers.

The passage of AB 987 reinforces the importance of employers adequately training their supervisors, managers, and human resources personnel to avoid engaging in conduct that may be perceived by an employee as retaliatory in nature. Specifically, termination or discipline of an employee who recently requested a religious or disability-related accommodation, whether or not the accommodation was granted, must be handled with extreme care.

To read the full article, please visit SHRM.

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