What this Supreme Court case could mean for discrimination

by | Jun 14, 2019 | Firm News

On Monday, CNN announced that the Supreme Court would hear a racial discrimination case. The case involves Comcast and Charter Communications and Entertainment Studios, an African-American owned entertainment company.

Comcast is challenging a lower court’s decision in favor of Entertainment Studios. The case may set a precedent that will make it harder to determine employer racial discrimination.

The case

Entertainment Studios first leveled the racial discrimination charge against Comcast after years of failing to get Comcast to host their networks on their cable system. They claimed that Comcast was violating federal law by racially discriminating against the company.

The case was first tried at a district level where the court ruled in favor of Comcast. Later, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals overturned that decision. Comcast now urges the Supreme Court to overturn the Court of Appeals’ decision, claiming they declined to host the networks due to legitimate business reasons.

Results of the case

One of the main points of contention in this case is what exactly constitutes racial discrimination. In the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, the court held that it was enough for a plaintiff to show that race was a significant factor in a business decision.

However, this case may challenge that definition, as Comcast’s legal team argues that racial discrimination only applies to decisions where race was the only factor.

The case will be important for employment law. It may establish a precedent for racial discrimination law standards which will affect both employers and employees.