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Labor and Employment Law

2016

Faculty Articles and Other Publications

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Justice Kennedy's Big New Idea, Sandra F. Sperino Jan 2016

Justice Kennedy's Big New Idea, Sandra F. Sperino

Faculty Articles and Other Publications

In a 2015 case, the Supreme Court held that plaintiffs could bring disparate impact claims under the Fair Housing Act (the "FHA"). In the majority opinion, Justice Kennedy relied heavily on the text and supporting case law interpreting Title VII of the Civil Rights Act ("Title VII") and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (the "ADEA '). Without explicitly recognizing the powerful new idea he was advocating, Justice Kennedy's majority opinion radically reconceptualized federal employment discrimination jurisprudence. This new reading of Title VII and the ADEA changes both the theoretical framing of the discrimination statutes and greatly expands their scope ...