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Case Scenario Analysis and Business Law Questions
Elements of Disparate Treatment
Under Title VII, the elements of disparate treatment include;
An employee must show that they belong to a protected class.
The person who discriminated against them knew of their membership to a protected
An act of harm must have emanated from the discrimination.
Persons of a similar status were treated favorably or were not subjected to the same
Can Janet Prove a Prima Facie Case?
Janet can successfully prove a prima facie case for disparate treatment. This is because,
as an African American woman, Janet belongs to a protected class by dint of her race and sex.
Furthermore, members of the promotion board were also aware of her membership in this
protected class. Janet was also denied a promotion by the promotions board. Finally, Jose, who
occupied the same position as Janet, was treated favorably by the promotions board.
Responding to the charges
Since Janet has proven her prima facie claim of disparate treatment, the plant will get a
chance to provide a legitimate and non-discriminatory reason for the action taken. The best tactic
for the plant would be to point out that the actions of the promotions board were informed by the
fact that the plant never had a Latino manager, despite Latinos making up 35% of the plant’s
employees. Therefore, by promoting Jose, the plant was trying to promote diversity and inclusion
within the plant’s leadership, and thus, this action was legitimate and non-discriminatory.
After the plant provides a legitimate and non-discriminatory reason, the burden of proof
shifts back to Janet to demonstrate that the reason was only a pretense hiding its discriminatory
nature. Janet can easily do this by demonstrating that the promotion board conducted a credit
check on her without letting her know and calling the hiring manager who spoke to her in
confidence to testify that she was the most qualified person for the promotion. Once she can do
this, Janet will ultimately prevail in her disparate treatment claim against the plant.
Elements of Disparate Impact
To establish disparate impact, Janet will have to
Identify the specific policy or practice at issue.
Establish significant disparity.
Application to the Case
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