Discrimination in the Workplace
Discrimination in the workplace can take many forms including age, disability, equal pay/compensation, genetic information, national origin, pregnancy, race/color, religion, or sex—any of which could justify a lawsuit against an employer for unfair treatment.
The age discrimination in employment Act (ADEA) forbids age discrimination against employees who are age 40 or older in any aspect of employment, including hiring, firing, pay, job assignments, promotions, layoff, training, fringe benefits, and any other term or condition of employment.
The Americans with disabilities act forbids discrimination against an employee with a disability because she has a disability, because she has a history of a disability (such as cancer that is controlled or in remission) or because she is believed to have a physical or mental impairment that is not transitory (lasting or expected to last six months or less) and minor (even if she does not have such an impairment). The law requires an employer to provide a reasonable accommodation to an employee with a disability, unless doing so would cause significant difficulty or expense for the employer (“Undue hardship”). The law also protects people from discrimination based on their relationship with a person with a disability (even if they do not themselves have a disability). For example, it is illegal to discriminate against an employee because her husband has cancer.
The Equal Pay Act requires that men and women in the same workplace be given equal pay for equal work. The jobs need not be identical, but they must be substantially equal. Job content (not job titles) determines whether jobs are substantially equal. All forms of pay are covered by this law, including salary, overtime pay, bonuses, stock options, profit sharing and bonus plans, life insurance, vacation and holiday pay, cleaning or gasoline allowances, hotel accommodations, reimbursement for travel expenses, and benefits.
Under Title II of GINA, it is illegal to discriminate against employees because of genetic information (for example, medical history). Title II of GINA prohibits the use of genetic information by employers in making employment decisions and from requesting, requiring or purchasing genetic information, and strictly limits the disclosure of genetic information.
National origin discrimination involves treating an employee unfavorably because they are from a particular country or part of the world, because of ethnicity or accent, or because they appear to be of a certain ethnic background (even if they are not). National origin discrimination also can involve treating people unfavorably because they are married to a person of a certain national origin or because of their connection with an ethnic organization or group.
The Pregnancy Discrimination Act (PDA) forbids discrimination based on pregnancy when it comes to any aspect of employment, including hiring, firing, pay, job assignments, promotions, layoff, training, fringe benefits, such as leave and health insurance, and any other term or condition of employment. If a woman is temporarily unable to perform her job due to a medical condition related to pregnancy or childbirth, the employer must treat her in the same way as it treats any other temporarily disabled employee.
Race discrimination involves treating an employee unfavorably because he is of a certain race or because of personal characteristics associated with race (such as hair texture, skin color, or certain facial features). Color discrimination involves treating someone unfavorably because of skin color complexion.
Religious discrimination involves treating an employee unfavorably because of her religious beliefs. The law protects not only people who belong to traditional, organized religions, such as Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Islam, and Judaism, but also others who have sincerely held religious, ethical or moral beliefs.
Sex discrimination involves treating an employee unfavorably because of that person’s sex when it comes to any aspect of employment, including hiring, firing, pay, job assignments, promotions, layoff, training, fringe benefits, and any other term or condition of employment.
Woodside Law, P.A., a workplace discrimination law firm, can help you file a lawsuit against an employer for unfair treatment. For a free case review, or to find out more from a workplace discrimination lawyer, call Jason B. Woodside at (866) 316-0555.
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