Tipping the Scales of Justice: Fighting Weight-Based Discrimination

Overview

What rights, if any, do fat people have? If a child is obese, are the parents legally responsible? Can employers treat overweight employees as different, or disabled? Should fat people be protected by disability laws? Cases of illegal hiring practices, workplace prejudice, harassment, unfair treatment, medical malpractice, and denial of public access are being filed in increasing numbers as the nation continues to obsess over, and misunderstand, weight.
Two events in 1998-the ...
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Overview

What rights, if any, do fat people have? If a child is obese, are the parents legally responsible? Can employers treat overweight employees as different, or disabled? Should fat people be protected by disability laws? Cases of illegal hiring practices, workplace prejudice, harassment, unfair treatment, medical malpractice, and denial of public access are being filed in increasing numbers as the nation continues to obsess over, and misunderstand, weight.
Two events in 1998-the controversial felony prosecution of a mother whose child died of obesity-related complications, and the National Institutes of Health declaration of a national weight standard-forced the weight debate to a new level of public awareness.
Very little literature on the law and weight exists, so each new case is a potential precedent-setter. Tipping the Scales of Justice presents actual cases and the stories behind the legal arguments, showing for the first time the varied and surprising ways that fat has become a courtroom topic.
An attorney who focuses on weight-related cases, Sondra Solovay details court attitudes toward weight in relation to employment and discrimination law, child/family law, disability law, civil rights, minorities, public policy, diets and exercise, and much more, while intermingling a personal narrative on major cases and their outcomes. This fascinating book will be essential for law courses and libraries, as well as a one-of-a-kind perspective for anyone concerned about weight as a legal issue.
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Editorial Reviews

Booknews
Legal consultant Solovay covers a number of legal issues related to weight-based discrimination against Americans. Writing for the layperson, she looks at discrimination issues in the schools, the workplace, jury selection, medicine, and other areas. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781573927642
  • Publisher: Prometheus Books
  • Publication date: 1/28/2000
  • Pages: 200
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 0.57 (d)

Meet the Author

Sondra Solovay (Berkeley, CA), a graduate of the University of California Berkeley Boalt Hall School of Law, is an attorney and noted activist. Her media experience includes Court TV, CNN, MSNBC, The New York Times, Associated Press, and much more.
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Table of Contents

Foreword 9
Acknowledgments 11
1 Prejudice in Practice: The Felony Trail of Marlene Corrigan - A Case Study of Fat Bias in the Pursuit of Justice 13
2 The Food Police: An Introduction to Fat Prejudice 25
3 But Names Will Never Hurt Me: Growing Up Fat 31
4 Education and the Fat Child 47
5 If the Child Is Fat, Is the Parent Unfit? 64
6 Verbal Abuse and Beyond 78
7 Judging the Jury 86
8 Professional Appearance Required: Weight-Based Employment Discrimination 99
9 Intersectionality Issues in Weight Discrimination: Weight Requirements as Sex Discrimination 122
10 Is an Ample Body an Able Body?: Fat and Disability Law 128
11 The Brand-New, Eat-All-You-Want, Safe, Effective, Immediate, Forever Weight-Loss Plan: Truth in Advertising 171
12 The Medical Profession: Assumptions Before Science 189
13 The Medical Profession: Conflicts of Interest 210
14 How the Medical Profession Treats Fat People 218
15 Throw Away the Key: Involuntary Adult Commitment 229
16 The Fat Lady's Screaming, Not Singing: Continuing the Fight Against Fat Discrimination 233
App. A: Resources and Activism 239
App. B: The Law 243
App. C: Excerpts from the Americans with Disabilities Act 247
Index 257
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 21, 2000

    Fair Treatment For People of all Weights

    Excellent and timely review of discrimination against fat people . Particularly valuable legal resource as well as being very interesting. Crisply and entertainingly written while being very informative. This is a unique treatise.

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