Disparate Impact/Disparate Treatment Case Study

Disparate Impact/Disparate Treatment Case Study
Tammy Anderson
University of Phoenix
Employment Law
Ms. Spencer
December 11, 2005
Disparate Impact/Disparate Treatment Case Study
      This assignment will define two separate cases and explain the difference between disparate treatment and disparate impact.   Each case will have the following information included for review:
      • Facts of case
      • Issue or question to be answered by the court
      • Court’s decision
      • Court’s rationale
Case #1
Disparate Treatment
      PRICE WATERHOUSE v. HOPKINS, 490 U.S. 228 (1989) 490 U.S. 228 is a case about sex discrimination against a women.   The woman (respondent) had been working for an accounting partnership and was recommended for partnership herself.   After some time her recommendation was neither accepted nor denied by the partnership, but put on hold until the next evaluation period.   The respondent sued charging that she had been discriminated against on the basis of sex (gender) in its partnership decisions.
      The question for the court is was the decision or lack of decision considered sex discrimination against this woman when making decision for partnership.   After hearing many witness accounts and reviewing the recommendations written by the partners for the women in question, the court agreed with the respondent that there had been sex discrimination against the respondent.   There was additional evidence that that many of the women previously recommended for partner were referred to in sex-based terms in their recommendations from the partners at the firm.   According to the transcript the idea of some of the comments made by the partners providing feedback stated that her attitude and assertiveness was not lady like.   That swearing was also not acceptable for a woman wishing to become a partner.   Apparently it was ok for the male partners however.   Because of the above examples of the comments, it was ruled that it was sex...