Settlement of "Conduct Not Becoming His Gender" Case
by Michael Fox
Although settlements mean nothing in the way of legal precedent, the fact that a substantial employer (Babies "R" Us) is willing to pay a significant sum (just over $200,000) often has the actual effect of causing others to consider bringing such cases. Newsday.com has the story. The putative plaintiff was an 18 year old who quit after seven months claiming he was harassed because "he did not conform to societal stereotypes of how a man should look or behave." As often in employment law, one can see a slippery slope once those kinds of arguments become meaningful in terms of successful causes of action. Employer's concerns should be heightened since it was the EEOC which obtained the settlement.