Workplace Discrimination Cases: How You Can Know If It’s Happening To You and What You Can Do About It
There are so many forms of discrimination and harassment. And, there are many federal laws that forbid persons to discriminate and harass persons based on their color, race, national origin, religion, sex, disability, age, pregnancy, etc.
Local and state laws contain similar protections and can give protection in other circumstances as well. Many comprehensive laws tackle and forbid workplace discrimination and harassment. If you’re an employee and feel discriminated and/or harassed by your employers and/or your co-workers, what options do you have available?
1 – Talk To Your Employer About Your Feelings
A good start to deal with discrimination and harassment is to talk with your employer. Most of these acts tend to go unpunished because the victim doesn’t make it clearly known that the behavior is not unwelcome. It’s very rare that employers will openly admit discrimination and/or harassment and assist you in bringing legal papers against them. Your employer must comply with the law but you must ensure that your rights are protected.
2 – Inform Them About The Issues
It’s important that your employer knows that you’re serious about the matter. Be sure that a written report is made each time you report an incident. Ask that for an investigation into the matter and that corrective action is taken against the offender(s). Employers need to promptly look into all workplace discrimination and/or harassment reports.
How Can You Know What Actions Are Against The Discrimination Law
The law doesn’t prohibit all prejudiced actions. It only forbids discrimination based on a person’s status that’s protected under federal law such as:
- National origin
- Union activity
That means if an employer decides to base his/her decision on race, they can legally be in trouble for discrimination. If a minority is paid less money than his/her counterparts due to race, the employer could be in trouble for discrimination because it violates Title VII. It’s not illegal for employers to pay low wages to one employee and not others if that employee is performing different tasks. The question is whether the dissimilarity in treatment is based upon the person’s protected status. When treatment is based on protected status, it’s known as intentional discrimination.
Title VII also forbids behavior that has the consequence of discriminating against people of a protected class even if the reason for the treatment difference is not on a protected class. For instance: an employer decides to hire just applications that don’t have custody of pre-school age children. When looked at thoroughly, the decision to hire this way is not a protected class.
However, when looked at more closely, the policy unduly rules out female applicants against male applicants since women tend to be custodial parents. This kind of policy would have a inequitable effect and is known as disparate impact. Title VII forbids disparate impact discrimination except in cases where the employer can confirm its policy is necessary for the business and must be done for the sake of the job.
The ADA classifies discrimination not just in terms of both disparate impact and treatment but also in terms of rejection to give rational accommodation to an otherwise competent individual with a disability.