Date and Time: 12/01/2020 at 1 pm eastern
Run Time: 90 minutes including Q & A session
Leader: Dr. Jim Castagnera, Attorney at Law
Credits: Awarded 1.5  credit hours by HRCI
Price: Webinar $295; Webinar + Download $349 (Share the download with your colleagues)
Audience: HR, benefits, finance, managers and supervisors, IT, CEOs, in-house counsel, etc.


Age, health, disabilities-related discrimination are just examples of the different types of discrimination claims employees make against their employers  Now, in the Covid-19 back-to-work environment it has become even easier for employees to make these and other discrimination-related claims based on management decisions relating to who should come back to the workplace and who will be permitted to work from home, as well as based on the management actions to protect workers who return to the workplace.

Make no mistake, in this pandemic work environment any and all claims of discrimination have the potential to become a significant problem for employers with such a large percentage of the workforce comprised of elderly workers, employees suffering from pre-existing health conditions, and the large number of employees with disabilities. Employer exposure is significant.  The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) estimates that in 2019 almost 7% of the workforce was 65 years old or older, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that 34% of the population between the ages of 18 and 65 have at least one pre-existing medical condition. Also, the BLS estimates there are more than 18 million people with disabilities working in the country.

Every year the EEOC and the courts hear numerous complaints from employees claiming that their employers have discriminated against them because of their age, health, a disability, or for some other unlawful reason. In the new work environment employees have additional arguments to support these claims, and it won’t be sufficient for an employer to simply say that a COVID-19-related management decision was made for the good of the workplace and the well-being of the employee was taken into consideration. Employers will need to prove that their actions were not discriminatory.

Please join Dr. Jim Castagnera, attorney at law, as he discusses the responsibility of employers to adhere to various federal, state, and local anti-discrimination requirements, and offers guidance for how employers can apply these requirements uniformly and fairly across their workforces in the Covid-19 workplace.


During this important webinar Dr. Castagnera will be discussing:

  • Key provisions of the federal anti-discrimination laws and regulations the EEOC is responsible for enforcing including: the ADA, GINA, ADEA, Sections 501 and 505 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Pregnancy Discrimination Act, etc.
  • Related state, and local anti-discrimination requirements
  • Important recent anti-discrimination COVID-19 EEOC actions and review of recent court cases
  • EEOC interpretation of provisions of the ADA relating to going back-to-work
  • CDC and OSHA back-to-work employer guidance
  • How to use the ADA interactive process to support your management decisions
  • Necessary supervisor and manager training to reduce claims of discrimination
  • Necessary review and changes of policies and procedures, including sample language
  • How to document your management back to work decisions
  • Avoiding claims of retaliation
  • Protecting employee privacy while gathering the information you nee
  • Employer latitude in the case of a pregnant employee
  • Employer latitude to decide who should work remotely and who should come back to the workplace
  • Is age necessarily a disability under the ADA?
  • What illnesses are considered disabilities under the ADA? Has that expanded
    since COVID-19?
  • Does the possibility of contracting COVID-19 require an employer to allow
    employees to work from home?
  • If the employee is in a demographic group more likely to suffer an adverse
    outcome, how does that impact the work at home determination?
  • If the employee requests a work-from-home accommodation, may the
    employer substitute alterations in the physical workplace or work conditions?
  • How does an employee’s function impact a work-from-home determination?
    What about supervisors?
  • Are mental health issues stemming from COVID-19 concerns considered long-
    term disabilities warranting an accommodation?
  • GINA‒does a genetic predisposition to an illness warrant accommodation in the
    pandemic environment? And what are the employee’s privacy rights?
  • What if you say “no” to a request for an accommodation? What does the
    employer have to document? What does the employee have to show?


Dr. Jim Castagnera is an employment and labor attorney with more than 36 years’ experience. He is a sought-after speaker on coronavirus and other HR-compliance topics, an experienced professor, successful author, and accomplished consultant who assists his clients in meeting their current HR compliance challenges with clear and practical solutions. He holds a JD and a PhD from Case Western Reserve University. Following ten years as an employment and labor lawyer with a major Philadelphia law firm, he served for 23 years as in-house legal counsel at Rider University. With 20 published books, mostly on HR-law topics, he teaches HR compliance in Drexel University’s Kline School of Law and is the chief consultant of Holland Media Services, with offices in Los Angeles and Philadelphia.


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