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SHRM Weighs In on U.S. Supreme Court Cases

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SHRM recently filed two amicus or "friend of the court" briefs to offer its views on cases that have a potential impact on HR professionals and the workplace. 

In the first case, BCI Coca-Cola Bottling Company of Los Angeles v. EEOC, SHRM supported BCI Coca-Cola in a dispute to determine whether the company is liable for race discrimination due to a supervisor allegedly discriminating against and terminating an employee.  SHRM argued that a HR professional who acts independently of a supervisor’s report has not violated the disparate treatment provisions of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act.  In addition, the Society stated that HR professionals should not be expected to conduct full investigations for every termination.  The U.S. Supreme Court is scheduled to hold oral arguments on this case in April.

In the second case, Chamber of Commerce of the United States of America v. Edmund Brown, SHRM filed a brief that challenges a California law (AB 1889) prohibiting employers who receive a state grant of over $10,000 from using those funds to “assist, promote, or deter union organizing.”  SHRM argued that the California law has a significant impact on smaller employers that receive state funds.  The Society also emphasized that the law is preempted by the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) and undermines the enforcement of the Act. 

For more information about these amicus briefs, please contact Kenya Wiley at

For more information about these and other public policy issues, please visit
©2007 Society for Human Resource Management

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