This & That Tuesday 14.12.30

by hr4u.
Jan 7 15

"This & That" Tuesday: Whistleblower, Addiction-Related Misconduct, Racial Harassment


December 30, 2014

Here is the latest issue of “This & That” Tuesday. I hope you find it to be informative and useful.



You can always check out my website for upcoming speaking engagements that are guaranteed to be of value to business owners or for a list of topics that I can speak on at Chambers, Clubs, Business Associations, etc. More details about the events, topics and Human Resources 4U, in general, can be found on my website.


Upcoming Events

HR4U 101 Workshop, January 14, 2015. This will include information regarding the new employment laws and regulations for 2015 including the new “Paid Sick Leave” law.

Here is a link with more detailed information on the Workshop.


For 2015, more details to follow:

January 6, Webinar on How to Build a Salary Structure and go to Webinar Search – by month


January 15, Labor Law Update 2015, La Verne Chamber of Commerce

Information at Human Resources 4U


January 21, Webinar on Coaching for Improved Performance and go to Webinar Search – by month


January 27, Labor Law Update 2015, Irwindale Chamber of Commerce

Information at: Human Resources 4U


February 5-6, What Employers Need to Know About Human Resources, Seminar and go to Seminar Search – by month


February 11, Webinar on Discipline and go to Webinar Search – by month


February 12, Labor Law Update 2015, Glendora Chamber of Commerce

Information at Human Resources 4U


February 21, Labor Law Update 2015, Institute of Management Accountants, San Gabriel Valley

Information at: Human Resources 4U


Hospital Settles Whistleblower Claims for $85 Million

A Florida hospital recently reached an agreement with the U.S. Department of Justice to pay $85 million to settle part of a whistleblower lawsuit initiated by a former employee who accused the hospital of illegal kickbacks to its cancer doctors and neurosurgeons, and Medicare fraud.  This case was closely watched by healthcare entities, as potential liability reportedly exceeded $1 billion. 


The plaintiff, a former hospital employee, brought suit against the hospital in 2009 for alleged violations of the Stark Law and the False Claims Act's (FCA) Anti-Kickback Statute.  The former employee claimed, among other things, that physicians made medically unnecessary referrals to the hospital that were then processed through Medicare.


The Department of Justice intervened in the case in 2011. This is not the first time the federal government has intervened in these types of matters, and likely will not be the last.  In May 2009, Attorney General Eric Holder and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced the Health Care Fraud Prevention and Enforcement Action Team initiative, exemplifying the government's focused efforts to reduce and prevent Medicare and Medicaid financial fraud.  Since January 2009, the Justice Department has recovered billions of dollars through False Claims Act cases involving fraud against federal healthcare programs. 


AA Foundries Drops Appeal of Racial Harassment Lawsuit

AA Foundries, a San Antonio, TX manufacturer of ferrous castings and producer of foundry mold machines, has agreed to drop its appeal of a racial harassment judgment for $140,000 and resolve the case with the EEOC. The EEOC's lawsuit had charged AA Foundries with racially harassing its African-American employees in violation of federal law.


During a three-day trial in September 2012, a federal jury heard evidence that the AA Foundries superintendent, the top plant official, not only used the "N- word" himself, but admitted that it did not bother him that derogatory racial slurs were commonly heard in the workplace. The superintendent also called adult African-American male employees "mother-f——g boys," posted racially-tinged written material in the break room, and routinely slandered black employees, referring to them as "you people" and accusing African-Americans of always stealing and wanting welfare.


After several employees filed racial harassment charges with the EEOC, a noose was displayed at the AA Foundries workplace. In response to employee complaints about this noose, the superintendent described such reports as "B.S." and stated the noose "was no big deal" and that "you people are too sensitive." One African-American employee testified at trial that he filed an EEOC complaint because he wanted his children to learn not to be prejudiced against others, and to keep others from being prejudiced against them in the workplace.


The jury found in favor of the three black male employees and awarded punitive damages that totaled $200,000.  In addition to the jury awards, the court granted the EEOC's application for injunctive relief, and "permanently enjoined" AA Foundries from "engaging in any employment practice which facilitates, condones, or encourages a hostile work environment on the basis of race …" and ordered the company to implement an effective Title VII policy prohibiting race-based discrimination and to disseminate it to all employees and to conduct one hour of Title VII training.  



  • When an employee has a bad manager their performance can suffer for up to 5 years (Corporate Executive Board)
  • Disengagement caused by bad managers costs U.S. businesses up to $450 billion a year (Gallup)
  • Only 30% of employees are engaged as work (Gallup)
  • It is illegal in CA to record a confidential communication without consent of all parties. Violating this can subject you to a minimum of a $5000 fine.



"There’s only one way to succeed in anything, and that’s to give it everything.”

~Vince Lombardi~