On August 9, 2011, NELA filed an amicus brief in support of the respondents in Hosanna-Tabor Evangelical Lutheran Church and School v. EEOC, et al. (Case No. 10-553). The issue in this case is whether the First Amendment’s so-called “ministerial exception” bars a claim that a parochial school teacher was dismissed in retaliation for stating that she was going to assert her rights under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). In this case, Cheryl Perich was terminated from her teaching position after returning from medical leave. Though she primarily taught secular classes, Perich devoted approximately forty-five minutes of the seven hour school day to religious activities. When she attempted to return to work, the school prevented her from doing so and she told the school she planned to sue for discrimination. Perich was then sent a letter stating that she had “damaged, beyond repair” her working relationship with Hosanna-Tabor by “threatening to take legal action.” Approximately, one month later she was fired. The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) decided to take her case to court in late 2007 and Perich intervened in early 2008. The district court granted summary judgment in favor of Hosanna-Tabor, dismissing the claim on the … Read More
The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB or Board) in a case against D.R. Horton, Inc. (Case No. 12-CA-25764) is poised to decide the question of whether an employer’s contractual ban on class and collective actions violates workers’ rights to engage in concerted activities under Section 7 of the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) and constitutes an unfair labor practice. Section 7 of the NLRA provides that employees have the right “to engage in… concerted activities for the purposes of… mutual aid and protection.” 29 U.S.C. § 157. The NLRB, which has primary jurisdiction over enforcement of the NLRA, has recognized that by filing a class or collective action on behalf of similarly situated co-workers, an employee is engaging in protected activity under Section 7. If an employer’s policy unduly interferes with its employees’ Section 7 rights, that policy constitutes an unfair labor practice in violation of Section 8(a)(1) of the NLRA. 29 U.S.C. § 158(a)(1). This case arises out of unfair labor practice charges filed by Michael Cuda, an employee of a company engaged in the business of building and selling homes nationwide known as D. R. Horton, Inc. As a matter of company policy, D.R. Horton required each new … Read More
NELA’s amicus brief addresses how the district court’s decision removing employer stock investments and offerings from ERISA’s trustee responsibilities and accompanying fiduciary protections, where the plan mandates the investments or offerings, conflicts with 1) ERISA’s purpose and policy, 2) ERISA’s explicit statutory scheme, 3) the overwhelming majority of cases which have considered the duties of fiduciaries of plans investing in employer securities, and 4) the principles of trust law upon which the district court purported to rely.
Brief writers: Ellen M. Doyle (Stember Feinstein Doyle & Payne)… Read More