2021 LABOR/EMPLOYMENT LAW Q&A
Laurie L. Kirkland
Blankingship & Keith PC, Fairfax
Other legal specialties: Commercial litigation
Education: Bachelor’s degree, Harding University; law degree, George Mason University
Spouse: Joshua B. Isaacs
Children: Daughter Norah, 6 months
Recently read book: Having loved “The Giver,” by Lois Lowry since middle school, I recently discovered that it was the first book in a quartet, and I particularly enjoyed the fourth book, “Son.”
Favorite vacation spot: The Galápagos Islands, Croatia and anywhere in Italy
What do you see as emerging areas of litigation for employment discrimination law? In Virginia, particularly with the expansion of the Virginia Human Rights Act in 2020, I expect an increase in litigation arising out of an employee’s gender identity as well as an increase in claims by women seeking accommodations for pregnancy, childbirth or related conditions (including lactation).
You’ve worked on a pro bono basis for clients involved in conservatorship matters. What impact has the Britney Spears case had on this? Britney Spears’ case has highlighted the potential for abuse in a system designed to protect against abuse. While I have been fortunate that the lawyers, guardians ad litem, and guardians and conservators with whom I have practiced have prioritized the respondent’s dignity and have worked together to tailor orders to be no more restrictive than necessary, I hope Britney Spears’ case will make my positive experience a more typical one.