By Daniel Wiessner/ Reuters
Aug 21 (Reuters) – A U.S. appeals court has thrown out its unique decades-old precedent that made it more difficult for workers to prove discrimination claims.
The en banc 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Friday revived a lawsuit claiming Dallas County, Texas, required female jail guards, but not men, to work at least one day each weekend, overruling its longstanding precedent that federal anti-discrimination law only prohibits bias in “ultimate employment decisions” such as hiring, promotions and setting pay.
That precedent imposed a more strict standard than Title VII of the Civil Rights of Act 1964 itself, which applies to any “terms, conditions, or privileges of employment,” the New Orleans-based court said.
“It is no wonder … that no other court of appeals applies so narrow a concept,” Circuit Judge Don Willett wrote for the 5th Circuit.
Jay Ellwanger, a lawyer for the plaintiffs, said the ruling makes clear that Title VII prohibits all workplace discrimination.
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