Two recent decisions by the U.S Supreme Court have been characterized as “losses” for employers, and “wins” for employees who wish to have workplace accommodations due to their particular situations. Those perceptions are demonstrated in the popular press reports regarding the decisions, shown in the sidebar on the next page. While the employee indeed prevailed in both of those Supreme Court holdings, neither one indicates that the sky is falling for employers nor that nirvana has been reached for employees. Instead, the Young and Abercrombie decisions are so narrow that it is nearly impossible to determine what they really stand for. With that in mind, the purpose of this article is to dispel any myths regarding these cases, to set forth a detailed analysis of the Supreme Court’s holdings, and to outline how employers should react, subject to advice of counsel.
Sherwyn, D., & Ritter, D. B. (2015). The United States Supreme Court rules in favor of employees in the Young and Abercrombie cases: What do they really hold? [Electronic article]. Cornell Hospitality Labor and Employment Report, 15(20), 3-9.