The addition of a new protected class to an anti-discrimination statute tends to gather a lot of attention. Delaware’s not-so-recent additions of sexual orientation and gender identity are good examples. In September of 2013, the DelawareGeneral Assembly approved another, less publicized protected class. Now, in Delaware, volunteer firefighters, volunteer emergency medical technicians, volunteer fire police officers, and members of a ladies auxiliary of a volunteer fire company have a cause of action when an employer discriminates against them in hiring or discharge “because of such individual’s membership in a volunteer emergency responder organizer.” While the impact of the law may be small, it demonstrates the ever-expanding scope of employment law and the challenge employers face in keeping up with new developments. We welcome the opportunity to help employers comply with all relevant laws and address issues that do arise. Stay tuned for further updates.
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