IICJ Paper Mitigate Discrimination Claims in the United States to Reduce Risk for the International Organization Andrew B. Lane, Senior Associate General Counsel, The Hain Celestial Group, Inc., USA

The vulnerability of an international organization to the charge of discrimination in the workplace is more problematic than a similar charge levied against a domestic organization. This is true for several reasons. International organizations may have overseas senior management thus creating logistical challenges for responsiveness to regulatory (e.g. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission “EEOC)” inquiries. The foreign corporation may lack cultural familiarity with the forum on both a legal and factual basis. This creates a potent threat to the international organization that the safeguards afforded by diversity jurisdiction can protect in only the most modest of ways. True protection is begun at the earliest stages of the employment relationship (recruitment) and continues until termination and beyond. This article is written from the perspective of an attorney with a practice history of over 27 years. In my career I have been on different sides of a wide range of litigation arising from the workplace and have had the advantage of perceiving similar fact patterns from the perspective of counsel for the employer at some times and for the employee at other times. On occasion, my professional role has even been as the neutral as the Court assigned Mediator. One common perception thread from all three roles is the direct and indirect cost of such litigation to the organization and, without exception, the avoidability of such matters had one or both sides taken a slight detour from the path that brought them to conflict. This article examines the cultural and legal history that is the foundation for the present environment for workplace rights in the United States and then outlines practical applied strategy to avoid the missteps that may have brought parties to conflict in the form of an EEOC claim or court in matters sounding in workplace based discrimination.
Author
Andrew Lane
Andrew Lane’s areas of responsibilities include all aspects of the business of Multi-national Corporation as it grew in size from $50 Million to over One Billion dollars in annual sales. Corporation has multiple national and international locations. Responsibility for wide range of transactions and litigation, including • Development of senior management legal education programs in the areas of Employment Law and Products Liability • Representation of Corporation in Supreme Court and Superior Court trials in wide range of civil litigation matters • Establishment of Risk Management Training/ Crisis Management Program • Representation of corporation in a wide range of areas including, but not limited to, national litigation management, ADR, contract disputes, employment related administrative and court proceedings, liability defense, wrongful termination, race and gender discrimination claims and government regulatory matters • Crisis Management in wide range of FDA, FTC and Attorney General matters
Company
The Hain Celestial Group
The Hain Celestial Group, Inc. is the largest producer of natural food and personal care products in the world. Headquartered in New York with locations throughout the United States, Canada and Europe, Hain had sales in excess of 1 Billion ($ US) last year and is traded on Nasdaq.
Country
USA More
Area of Law
Employment More
Business Sector
Food Manufacture More
Month Published
September 2009 More
Edition
Vol. 2, No. 8, Summer 2009 More
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