Hawaii Employment Law Decisions From October 5 To October 11 – Jeffrey S. Harris

Former employee failed to make a prima facie case that counseling for not being found in scheduled work area was discriminatory, because she could not show either that she was performing job satisfactorily despite her not being found, that similarly situated employees outside her protected claim were treated more favorably than her or that the letter of counseling issued for her not being found were adverse.  Her discriminatory and retaliatory termination claims failed, because she could not show that the employers legitimate, nondiscrimination reason for terminating her in violation of a policy regarding conflict with passengers was pretextual.  Pulliam v. United Airlines, Inc., 2014 U.S. App. LEXIS 19351 (9th Cir. Oct. 8, 2014).

Isolated references to the terminated employee as an "old dog" and "crazy Canadian" were not direct evidence of age or national origin discrimination, because they were ambiguous and not directly tied to his termination.  Employee failed to make a prima facie case that termination was discriminatory, because his performance evaluations, written reproofs for disciplinary violations and final incident of insubordination prevented him from showing that he was performing his job satisfactorily or that he was treated differently than similarly situated employees outside his protected classification.  He did not show that a supervisor allegedly motivated by discrimination set in motion his termination.  None of the other evidence the employee offered supported his sweeping conclusory allegations of discrimination.  McClain v. County of Clark, 2014 U.S. App. LEXIS 19353 (9th Cir. Oct. 10, 2014).

Court properly decertified wage and hour class action on behalf of unlicensed accountants, because the central issue was whether the discretion they exercised or their work on management policies made them exempt professional employees, as the level of discretion afforded to them varied dramatically from assignment to assignment and some of them worked on management policies.  Brady v. Deloitte & Touche, 2014 U.S. App, Lexis 19283 (9th Cir. Oct. 9, 2014).

Court properly granted summary judgment against former employee's disability discrimination and retaliation claims, because he failed to raise a genuine dispute of material fact as to whether the company's reason for terminating his employment was pretextual.  Hooker v. Parker-Hannafin Corp., 2014 U.S. App. Lexis 19223 (9th Cir. Oct. 8, 2014).

Court properly granted summary judgment against former employee's racial and disability discrimination and retaliation claims because she failed to raise a genuine dispute of material fact as to whether the company's legitimate reasons for its actions were pretextual.  Court properly granted summary judgment on employee's hostile work environment claim because she failed to raise a genuine issues of material fact as to whether she was subject to conduct that was racially motivated in nature, and whether the conduct was sufficiently severe or pervasive to alter the conditions of her employment and create an abusive work environment.  Court properly granted summary judgment on employee's failure-to-accommodate claim because she failed to raise a genuine issue of material fact as to whether she was denied a reasonable accommodation and the creation of a new job was not required.  Taylor v. Dept. of the Air Force,2014 U.S. App. LEXIS 19216 (9th Cir. Oct. 8, 2014).

Equal Employment Opportunity Commission eliminated the need for an order requiring it to keep subpoenaed information confidential pending investigation of a charge, by conceding on appeal that during the investigation the complainant would not receive any of the subpoenaed information.  EEOC v. Basha's, Inc., 2914 U.S. App. LEXIS 19132 (9th Cir. Oct. 7, 2014).

District court improperly granted summary judgment against prisoner's employment discrimination claim under the Rehabilitation Act, because the prisoner raised a genuine issue of material fact as to whether the penitentiaries' reasons for not hiring him were solely by reason of his disability. Chavers v. Holbrook, 2014 U.S. App. LEXIS 19144 (9th Cir. Oct. 7, 2014).

An individual employed as a member of the Hawaii Air National Guard could not bring a Title VII of the Civil Rights Act claim based on the decision to grant him re-enlistment for one year instead of six years.  Terry v. Hawaii Air National Guard, 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 143468 (D. Haw. Oct. 8, 2014).

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