Sex Discrimination, Sixth Circuit

Plaintiff’s Substantial “Credibility Missteps” Render District Court’s Erroneous Admission Of Employer’s Testimony on Ultimate Issue — That There Was No Sexual Harassment — Harmless Error

The Sixth Circuit recently ruled that a plaintiff’s credibility at trial was so “irreparably undermined” that the district court’s erroneous admission of the employer’s evidence on the ultimate issue — that the employer had not engaged in sexual harassment — was harmless error.  Kendel v. Food & Commercial Workers Local 17-A, 6th Cir. No. 12-3409,  WL (January 22, 2013).

Plaintiff Kendel sued the Food & Commercial Workers Local 17-A, the United Food & Commercial Workers International Union, and Howard Barnes, the former president of Local 17-A, for sexual harassment and gender discrimination.  The district court granted summary judgment for the International. Kendel’s claims against Local 17-A and Barnes proceeded to trial.

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ADA, Sixth Circuit

The Sixth Circuit Reverses a District Court’s Summary Judgment that a Deaf Person is not “Otherwise Qualified” to Perform the “Essential Functions” of a Lifeguard

The Sixth Circuit recently decided an interesting case involving the Americans With Disabilities Act — a rare case in which an employer’s hiring decision literally could have life and death consequences.  In Keith v. County of Oakland, 6th Cir. No. 11-2276, 2013 WL 115647 (Jan. 10, 2013), the plaintiff, a deaf person, filed an action alleging that Oakland County, Michigan discriminated against him on the basis of disability in violation of the ADA and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 when it refused to hire him as a lifeguard for its wave pool.

Continue reading “The Sixth Circuit Reverses a District Court’s Summary Judgment that a Deaf Person is not “Otherwise Qualified” to Perform the “Essential Functions” of a Lifeguard”