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Verrill Dana, LLP

Verrill Dana, LLP is one of New England's preeminent regional law firms. With offices in Portland and Augusta, ME; Boston, MA; Westport, CT; Providence, RI; and Washington D.C. Verrill Dana provides sophisticated legal representation to businesses and individuals in the traditional areas of litigation, real estate, business law, labor and employment law, employee benefits, environmental law, intellectual property and estate planning.  The Firm also has industry-focused specialties including higher education, health care and health technology, energy, and timberlands. 

Disclaimer:  The content presented in this blog is for general information only, is not intended to constitute legal advice and cannot be relied upon by any person as legal advice. While we welcome you to contact our blog authors at hrlawupdate@verrilldana.com, the submission of a comment or question does not create an attorney-client relationship between the Firm and you. 

Entries in Anti-Discrimination (3)

Wednesday
Nov092016

Maine Passes Recreational Marijuana Statute—What Does This Mean for Employers

While still up for debate (as of the time of the writing of this blog), most news outlets and agencies in Maine are reporting that Question 1 on yesterday’s ballot has passed—therefore providing for recreational use of marijuana in Maine. What does this mean for employers?  That is the question of the day.

The statute itself provides the following as to employers:

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Aug172016

Individual Liability for Violators of New Massachusetts Gender Identity Public Accommodation Statute

Effective October 1, Massachusetts business owners who operate “places of public accommodations” will be prohibited from discriminating against individuals on the basis of gender identity.  Specifically,

An owner, lessee, proprietor, manager, superintendent, agent or employee of any place of public accommodation, resort or amusement that lawfully segregates or separates access to such place of public accommodation, or a portion of such place of public accommodation, based on a person’s sex shall grant all persons admission to, and the full enjoyment of, such place of public accommodation or portion thereof consistent with the person’s gender identity.

(Transgender Public Accommodations Bill.)  Massachusetts has prohibited transgender discrimination in housing, education, and employment since 2011, but has now extended the protections to public accommodations.  The statute is aimed to protect individual’s rights to use the restrooms and locker rooms that match the person’s gender identity. 

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Mar252015

Indiana Discrimination Bill: A Higher Law?

By now you’ve likely heard about the “Indiana Discrimination Bill” that passed through the Indiana legislature on Monday after a vote of 63-31. The Religious Freedom Restoration Act has been described as allowing any individual or corporation to cite their religious beliefs as a defense when sued by a private party. The intent, it would appear, was to protect business owners who did not want to serve same-sex couples. Let us use as a hypothetical a bakery that does not want to bake a cake for a same-sex couple as a result of the bakery owner’s religious beliefs. One of the primary authors of the bill, Senator Scott Schneider noted: “You don’t have to look too far to find a growing hostility towards people of faith.”  ACLU advocate Eunice Rho has been quoted as saying, “This bill would give anyone the right to argue that they don’t have to follow state or local laws—including basic civil rights laws related to employment, housing and public accommodations.”

Click to read more ...