WASHINGTON — A sharply divided U.S. Supreme Court on Monday decided to make it harder for Americans to sue businesses for retaliation and discrimination, leading a justice to call for Congress to overturn the court’s actions.
The court’s conservatives, in two 5-4 decisions, ruled that a person must be able to hire and fire someone to be considered a supervisor in discrimination lawsuits, making it harder to blame a business for a co-worker’s racism or sexism. The court then decided to limit how juries can decide retaliation lawsuits, saying victims must prove employers would not have taken action against them but for their intention to retaliate.
Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg wrote both dissents for the court’s liberal wing, and in a rare move, read one aloud in the courtroom. She said the high court had “corralled Title VII,” a law designed to stop discrimination in the nation’s workplaces.