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On Demand

Navigating Bias, Cultural Competence and Microaggressions

Bias |  Credibility |  External Investigators |  Internal Investigators |  Interviewing
Amy J Oppenheimer |  Vida L Thomas
1 Hour, 49 Minutes
Audio and Video
Original Program Date:
Jul 15, 2020
Never expires.


Understanding and navigating biases is critical to the work we do as investigators. This program will: 

  • Review implicit bias and confirmation bias and its impact on investigators 

  • Define and give examples of microaggressions and discuss the challenges of investigating them 

  • Discuss how investigators can increase their cultural competency.  

Before the webinar, participants will be given “pre-work” to help them identify their own implicit biases, so they will find the presentation more thought-provoking and helpful. The co-presenters will also discuss the impact of bias on their own practice and answer questions about bias and how to address it. 

Learning Objectives 

By attending this webinar, participants will be able to: 

  1. Understand implicit bias and how it impacts investigators. 

  1. Understand confirmation bias and how it impacts investigations. 

  1. Understand what microaggressions are and how to investigate them. 

  1. Understand how to increase cultural competency in investigations. 

Disclaimer: The contents of this webinar and the positions taken are those of the presenter only, may be time sensitive, and are not warranted, endorsed or otherwise recommended by AWI and are not intended to provide legal advice.




Amy J Oppenheimer's Profile

Amy J Oppenheimer

Oppenheimer Investigations Group LLP

Amy Oppenheimer is the founding partner of Oppenheimer Investigations Group LLP, a California law firm that focuses on conducting impartial investigations. Amy also led the founding of the Association of Workplace Investigators (AWI) in 2009, helped develop the association’s curriculum and served as Chair of its Institute for several years. In addition to conducting investigations, Amy is a trainer, mediator, and coach. She is also a retired Administrative Law Judge for the State of California.

Vida L Thomas's Profile

Vida L Thomas


Oppenheimer Investigations Group LLP

Vida Thomas, AWI-CH, has conducted well over 200 workplace investigations and is experienced in complying with Title IX, Title 5, the Public Safety Officers Procedural Bill of Rights, and the Firefighters Procedural Bill of Rights. She has considerable experience investigating matters within a union setting and is particularly adept at investigating complex matters involving high-profile employers and individuals. Vida frequently trains attorneys and human resources professionals on how to conduct legally effective workplace investigations. Vida has practiced employment law for more than two decades, with years of experience in advising employers on all aspects of employment law and human resources management. She also serves as an expert witness in state and federal employment lawsuits, and mediates litigation and non-litigation matters. Vida assists parties and attorneys in resolving employment claims, including but not limited to harassment, discrimination, and retaliation claims; wrongful termination claims; failure to accommodate and statutory leave violations; whistleblowing claims; wage and hour violations; and invasion of privacy claims. Vida also routinely conducts sexual harassment prevention training (including AB1825 compliance training) for state agencies and private companies. She teaches human resources professionals and EEO officers how to conduct effective workplace investigations, and teaches managers and supervisors how to implement legally effective performance reviews. Clients have complimented Vida’s knack for making the law accessible, explaining complex legal concepts in a way that is both thorough and easy to understand. She believes training is most effective when it provides concrete, useful tips for navigating today’s complicated and highly regulated workplace. She has advised clients and conducted dozens of seminars on the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Family Medical Leave Act, employee drug testing and sexual harassment investigations. Before joining the Oppenheimer Investigations Group, Vida was an of counsel attorney with Stoel Rives LLP and Weintraub Tobin Chediak Coleman Grodin Law Corporation. She began her legal career as an employment litigator at Kronick Moskovitz and then co-founded Carlsen Thomas, LLP, a boutique employment law firm that offered workplace investigations and employee training throughout