Discrimination in the workplace is aggravating and unfair and has the potential to be professionally, economically, and personally hurtful. It is also against the law, so you don’t have to accept it as part of the job. If you believe that you’ve been the victim of this injustice, fight back by enlisting an experienced Riverside employment discrimination attorney.
What Is Employment Discrimination?
Employment discrimination is illegal. It can happen at any point in the hiring or employment process and can be evident in a refusal to hire. Discrimination can also take the form of a denial of training opportunities or promotions, harassment or retaliation, inequality in disciplinary matters or compensation, or other unfair treatment that a worker is subjected to as a result of a characteristic that marks them as a member of a protected class.
What Are Protected Classes?
There are certain characteristics that employers are legally barred from using as a basis for discrimination in the workplace. Groups that share these characteristics are considered protected classes. Multiple federal and state laws, including the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and the California Fair Employment and Housing Act all provide legal protections against employment discrimination. What characteristics define protected classes? This list includes race, skin color, national origin, sex, gender, age, disability, pregnancy, religion, and genetic information.
The Statistics for Employment Discrimination
How prevalent is the problem of employment discrimination? In its annual report covering the fiscal year 2018, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission noted that it had received more than 76,418 charges of discrimination during the period. This included nearly 40,000 allegations of retaliation. Sex, race, and disability were among the factors cited most often. The agency received almost 25,000 charges in each of these categories.
Discrimination Versus Harassment
Discrimination and harassment are connected concepts. Discrimination is a broad term that includes a variety of inequitable behaviors. Harassment, which is offensive or unwelcome conduct motivated by a characteristic of a protected class, is one form of discrimination.
What Types of Employment Discrimination Occur?
Employment discrimination can take many forms:
- Age discrimination occurs when older employees are subjected to discrimination because of their age. If an employer fires or forces an older employer to retire so that they can fill their position with a younger employee, then they are guilty of age discrimination.
- Disability discrimination happens when employers discriminate against disabled workers. This might include a failure to provide a disabled worker with reasonable accommodations when doing so does not create an unreasonable difficulty for the company.
- Genetic information discrimination involves discriminatory behavior stemming from an employee’s genetic information. If an employer decides not to hire someone because their genetic information suggests they may have health problems, then they have engaged in genetic information discrimination.
- National origin discrimination involves discriminating against an employee because of their national origin. If an employer refuses to hire someone because of their country of origin, they have committed national origin discrimination.
- Pregnancy discrimination occurs when employers discriminate against an employee who is with child. For example, not hiring a woman because she is pregnant and will need maternity leave in the near future is pregnancy discrimination.
- Racial discrimination occurs when a worker is treated unequally because of their race or skin color. An employer who applies the company’s disciplinary policy unevenly so that people of color are unfairly penalized is acting illegally.
- Religious discrimination happens when workers are treated differently because of their religion. An employer who sets stricter standards for promotion for employees who practice a specific religion is engaging in religious discrimination.
- Sex discrimination involves discriminating against an employee because of their sex, gender, or sexual orientation. Engaging in harassing behaviors because an employee is female or gay or allowing other employees to do so would likely be considered sex discrimination.
Do I Need to Hire an Employment Discrimination Lawyer?
Discriminatory behavior is a real problem, but proving it can be difficult. To further complicate matters, California labor and employment law are both complex and evolving, and certain processes must be followed correctly to preserve your legal rights. If you hope to win your discrimination case, hiring an employment discrimination attorney is crucial. Whether your case results in negotiation or litigation, the attorney’s professional expertise and advice will likely prove invaluable as you move to secure the compensation that you deserve.
An award-winning California law firm, Rizio Lipinsky is committed to championing the civil rights of those who live and work in the Golden State. When you need a tough Riverside employment discrimination lawyer, who will advocate fiercely for you, count on us. Contact Rizio Lipinsky today to request a free consultation.
- This article should only be used for informational purposes. It does not constitute legal advice, and it does not create an attorney-client relationship with anyone. If you need legal advice, please consult an attorney in your community.
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When I was discriminated and denied a job for being pregnant, I was devastated, overwhelmed, mad and hurt. When I met with Mr. Lipinsky he let me know it was going to be ok, any questions or concerns he answered right away. He made me feel like a friend not just a client, someone I can talk to and would listen. He really looks for your best interest at heart. I looked around for other lawyers before finding Mr. Lipinsky, and he was the only one that truly explained everything to me in detail and spoke to me with the truth with anything and everything dealing with my case. With Mr. Lipinsky you don't only have a lawyer that will fight for what is entitled to you, but a friend that lets you know its ok and things like this happen to the best of us.