hr employment law discussion 2

Discuss proof of discrimination and the difference between disparate treatment and disparate impact. Give an example of each.
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Shrm discribes the difference between disparate treatment and disparate impact as “Both disparate impact and disparate treatment refer to discriminatory practices. Disparate impact is often referred to as unintentional discrimination, whereas disparate treatment is intentional. The terms adverse impact and adverse treatmentare sometimes used as an alternative.” and example of disparate treatment would be hiring a woman who has 10 years in a leadership position and paying her $120k and then hiring a male in the same department $125k with 12 years experience. This can be considered unintentional because of the amount of years they have been working. An example of disparate impact would be purposely giving a male or female a much larger salary because of gender. As times goes on a wish we could say that this is still not happening however in 2018 AAWU reported that there was an 82% pay gap between men and women. For every woman that made $45k a year a man made $55k a year. There is no initial report on whether or not this is on purpose but i think that it is time that employers challenge one another and start offering competitive wages for both genders based on skill and provide promotion when it is needed.

Proof of Discrimination is a very complicated process. It is not simply based on how someone views the circumstances or how the victim feels about the situation. Proof of discrimination calls for evidence to be submitted to show a person in a protected class was adversely affected. Discrimination comes in two forms: disparate treatment and disparate impact. Disparate treatment means “employers may not treat applicants or employees differently because of their membership in a protected class” (Muller, 2013). According to Muller, protected classes include race, color, religion, national origin, language issues, sex, and age (2013). For example, a company cannot decide not to hire an applicant because they are a specific gender, and they cannot pass someone for a promotion due to how old they are. This falls under disparate treatment. Disparate impact, on the other hand, makes it illegal for an employer to “use an employment practice that is neutral on its face but that has an unjustified adverse impact on members of a protected class” (Muller, 2013). Our text gives an example of requiring a high school diploma in order to obtain a position at a company. It is okay to require the diploma; however, it must be a requirement needed in order to perform the job. If a protected class is being held back from obtaining these positions because they do not have the opportunity to obtain a high school diploma, AND the diploma is not required to perform the job, then this is called disparate impact. The rule itself is not discriminatory, but the impact on the protected class is discriminatory, whether it is intentional or not.

Muller, M. (2013). The Manager’s Guide to HR. [Yuzu]. Retrieved from