What Is FRD?
Family Responsibilities Discrimination, or FRD, is employment discrimination against workers because they have family caregiving responsibilities. Employees who care for family members includes mothers and fathers of young children, pregnant women, and workers who care for sick spouses or partners or aging parents. It is also known as “caregiver discrimination.” Some examples of FRD include:
- Creating reasons for terminating a woman because she is pregnant;
- Refusing to hire the mother of a child with a disability;
- Not promoting a man because he works from home on days his child is sick;
- Demoting a man who uses family medical leave twice a month to take his mother to chemotherapy;
- Not considering a woman for a leadership position because she has preschool-aged children.
Companies are facing increasing liability from FRD, with some verdicts in the millions. The number of claims filed with the EEOC is growing. Experts predict that changes in the workforce mean more caregivers will be working, and say companies need to take action to protect their bottom line by preventing FRD.
Learn more about FRD so you can protect your company:
While there is no single federal law that prohibits family responsibilities discrimination, several federal laws and numerous state and local laws forbid employers from treating workers differently because they have caregiving obligations. This legal patchwork makes it difficult for employers to understand and comply with the law. Here are some key laws read more
Discrimination against caregivers can take many forms: refusing to hire, not providing opportunities for training necessary for advancement, not giving evaluations that are unjustifiably negative, not socializing, providing resources or sales leads necessary to performance, making sarcastic or belittling jokes, being overly critical of work product, scrutinizing attendance, refusing to promote, disciplining for minor read more
The number of FRD cases filed has been increasing every year. A study from the Center for WorkLife Law shows that federal FRD case filings have increased from about 25 in 1998 to about 269 in 2008. A look at what is causing this increase suggests that the rate of new claims will continue to rise. Consider the following: read more
The good news about FRD is that it can be prevented. The basic steps are assessing FRD in your company, training everyone about FRD and its causes, reviewing policies and procedures, monitoring for effects, aligning culture and creating a complaint resolution process. read more
Learn more in our FRD Knowledge Center.