Legal Update – May 2024


By Claire Sweetman

EEOC Issues New Enforcement Guidelines on Workplace Harassment

On April 29, 2024, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) issued the final version of its new enforcement guidance on workplace harassment.[1] The guidance details the EEOC’s position on what qualifies as a protected characteristic and identifies workplace behaviors that the EEOC believes rise to the level of harassment.[2]

An initial draft of the guidance was proposed in 2017 but was not promulgated. The 2024 guidance represents the first major overhaul of guidance in 25 years and incorporates principals set forth by the U.S. Supreme Court case, Bostock v. Clayton Cnty., 590 U.S. 644 (2020), which held Title VII’s prohibition on employment discrimination “because of sex” encompasses discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. The updated enforcement guidance also provides that harassment may include comments or conduct aimed at an individual who does not present in a manner that would stereotypically be associated with that person’s sex, as well as the denial of access to a bathroom consistent with a worker’s gender identity.[3] The new guidance also addresses harassment on the basis of pregnancy, including harassment related to breastfeeding, morning sickness, contraception and the decision to obtain (or not obtain) an abortion.[4]

Barring any successful legal challenges or other judicial intervention, the new guidance is effective immediately and outlines the EEOC’s position regarding what conduct constitutes unlawful harassment. Employers should review EEOC’s new guidance to help ensure that their workplace harassment policies and initiatives are current, and stay up to date on legal developments regarding Title VII.[5]

Federal Judge Rejects Trump Law Firm Withdrawal

On Thursday, May 2, 2024, a New York federal judge rejected a request made by the law firm representing the presidential campaign of former president Donald Trump from withdrawing from its representation.[6] Magistrate Judge Katharine Parker provided the law firm, LaRocca, Hornik, Greenberg, Kittredge, Carlin & McPartlan, with a deadline of Tuesday, May 7, 2024 to submit “a more detailed explanation” of its argument that a “irreparable breakdown” of its relationship with the Trump campaign required the firm to withdraw from representing it in the case.[7] Judge Parker wrote in her order: ““In this case, defense counsel’s declaration is insufficient to grant withdrawal at this time . . . By May 7, 2024, defense counsel shall submit a more detailed declaration setting forth the basis for the deterioration in the attorney-client relationship sufficient for the Court to evaluate the motion.”[8]

The lawsuit was filed by former 2016 campaign advisor Arlene “A.J.” Delgado, who alleged that she was removed of her duties as advisor and director of Hispanic outreach for Trump’s campaign in 2016 and prevented from taking an expected job in the White House after she informed campaign officials that she was pregnant by senior Trump campaign advisor Jason Miller.[9] At the time, Miller was married to another woman. The lawsuit also alleges that the Trump campaign violated an agreement made in 2017 to privately settle Delgado’s complaint for an undisclosed amount of money.[10]

The law firm has until May 7, 2024, to submit a stipulation of substitution of counsel or provide a more detailed explanation of the “irreparable breakdown” of its relationship with the Trump




[4] Id.

[5] Id.


[7] Id.

[8] Id.

[9] Id.

[10] Id.