Jamaica, NY asked in Employment Discrimination for New York

Q: Is it legal for an employer to discriminate against me (or not deal with sexual harassment against me) under Title VII?

Title VII of the civil rights act seems to contain the following exemption for "unlawful employment practices":

(f) Members of Communist Party or Communist-action or Communist-front organizations

As used in this subchapter, the phrase “unlawful employment practice” shall not be deemed to include any action or measure taken by an employer, labor organization, joint labor­ management committee, or employment agency with respect to an individual who is a member of the Communist Party of the United States or of any other organization required to register as a Communist­-action or Communist-­front organization by final order of the Subversive Activities Control Board pursuant to the Subversive Activities Control Act of 1950 [50 U.S.C. 781 et seq.].

So is it legal to discriminate against someone if they are a member of the communist party USA?

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1 Lawyer Answer
James Francis Barna
James Francis Barna
  • Employment Law Lawyer
  • Cazenovia, NY
  • Licensed in New York

A: While this language, and other "witch hunt" language against Communist Party members is archaic, it is contained in Title VII, and to my knowledge has never been abrogated by the Supreme Court on First Amendment grounds, so on its face, Title VII does not apply to Communist Party Members. However, the federal statute concerning registering Communist organizations was repealed in 1993, which could render this provision of Title VII moot, although it is open to interpretation.

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