GINA, Privacy, and Antisubordination

Bradley A. Areheart

University of Tennessee College of Law

April 26, 2012

Georgia Law Review, Vol. 46, p.705, 2012
University of Tennessee Legal Studies Research Paper No. 194

This Essay briefly considers both the current and optimal role of privacy in employment discrimination jurisprudence. The recently passed Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA) is illustrative of one way to value privacy through employment discrimination mandates. In particular, GINA includes a prohibition on the use of genetic information in all employment decisions, affording a measure of genetic privacy to potential and current employees.

GINA stands in contrast to prior employment discrimination statutes, which have often encouraged or required employers to be knowledgeable of and consider particular identity traits through policies such as reasonable accommodation and affirmative action, and the disparate impact doctrine. There is thus a tension between privacy and effectuating certain employment discrimination policies that are directed toward antisubordination ends. After exploring the tension that sometimes exists between privacy and antisubordination, this Essay argues that, in the statutory areas of the Americans with Disabilities Act and GINA, foregoing privacy is often desirable in order to fight subordination by employees revealing, and employers considering, particular health traits and information.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 15

Keywords: GINA, Privacy, Antisubordination, Anticlassification, Antidiscrimination, ADA, Employment Discrimination, Disability, Genetic Information, Civil Rights, Disclosure

JEL Classification: I00, I10, I12, J70, J71, J78, J79

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Date posted: April 26, 2012 ; Last revised: September 19, 2012

Suggested Citation

Areheart, Bradley A., GINA, Privacy, and Antisubordination (April 26, 2012). Georgia Law Review, Vol. 46, p.705, 2012; University of Tennessee Legal Studies Research Paper No. 194. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2045806

Contact Information

Bradley A. Areheart (Contact Author)
University of Tennessee College of Law ( email )
1505 West Cumberland Avenue
Knoxville, TN 37996
United States

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