Re[2]: Hiring Practices

Subject: Re[2]: Hiring Practices
From: Beth Mazur <mazur -at- MAYA -dot- COM>
Date: Wed, 2 Apr 1997 12:15:59 -0500

At 8:39 AM -0600 4/2/97, Virginia L. Krenn wrote:
>Beth Mazur <mazur -at- MAYA -dot- COM> at 4/2/97 9:14 AM wrote:
>> At that time, our understanding of federal discrimination laws was that
>> is is *not* illegal to *ask*. It is illegal to *use* information
>> pertaining to protected classes when making hiring decisions.
>I believe that your understanding was incorrect.

Sorry...I risk the wrath of Eric to point out the following from -


SEC. 2000e-2. [Section 703]

(a) It shall be an unlawful employment practice for an employer -

(1) to fail or refuse to hire or to discharge any individual, or
otherwise to discriminate against any individual with respect to
his compensation, terms, conditions, or privileges of employment,
because of such individual's race, color, religion, sex, or
national origin; or

(2) to limit, segregate, or classify his employees or applicants
for employment in any way which would deprive or tend to deprive any
individual of employment opportunities or otherwise adversely affect
his status as an employee, because of such individual's race, color,
religion, sex, or national origin.

The words "ask" and "interview" do not appear in this act. I don't
dispute that the act of "asking" questions related to protected status
may be offered as proof of discrimination (which is the illegal act).
But conceivably even those employers who ask inappropriate questions
can prevail if they can prove that they did not discriminate in their

There are many other laws (see
for a good summary), so Virginia may be right. But then again, so
might I. Followups should likely be directed to and/or your
own state EEO office.

Beth Mazur
mazur -at- maya -dot- com

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