There are many different types of discrimination that are prohibited by state and federal employment laws. “Discrimination” is any adverse action taken against an employee (or even a job applicant) based upon their membership in a protected class. These actions could be a demotion, refusal to give a pay raise, denying opportunities for advancement, or unfair discipline. Discrimination can even occur against a job applicant who is not hired. If you suspect that any adverse employment action has been taken against you based on your membership in a protected class, consult with our San Francisco discrimination lawyer as soon as possible.
Here are just some of the classes that are protected by law:
Racial discrimination in employment was banned by Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Racial discrimination can be based upon the color of a person’s skin, but it can also be based on other characteristics associated with race (like hair texture or facial features). Racial discrimination can also occur based on the race of the employee’s spouse or other people the employee associates with. Racial discrimination can even occur between two employees who are the same color or identify as members of the same race.
Religious discrimination occurs when an employee is treated unfavorably because of their religious beliefs. The discrimination does not have to be based on an organized religion – employees are also protected from discrimination based on their sincerely held religious, ethical, or moral beliefs.
The Americans With Disabilities Act prohibits discrimination in employment based upon an employee’s disability. Of course, some disabilities prevent an employee from performing the essential functions of a job, but this does not mean that they can be prohibited from that job altogether.
Employers are required to make “reasonable accommodations” to allow a disabled worker to perform a job. Whether the accommodation is “reasonable” or not will depend on the burden it places on the employer. An “undue burden” is one that imposes significant expense, interrupts operations, or takes an inordinate amount of time to make. Our San Francisco discrimination lawyer can help you protect any reasonable accommodations that allow you to obtain or maintain employment.
Gender discrimination has become one of the broadest categories of employment protections in the U.S. On the surface, it prevents an employer from treating any employee differently on the basis of their sex. This simple statement has been expanded to prevent discrimination based on gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, and pregnancy. It is even the reason that sexual harassment is prohibited.
The most important thing you can do to protect your legal rights as an employee is to get legal advice from your own employment lawyer. Remember – the company’s HR and legal departments exist to protect the company. They are not likely to tell you when you have a legal claim against the company.
Contact us at Bryan Schwartz Law to schedule a consultation with an experienced Bay Area employment attorney as soon as possible. The sooner you have a lawyer on your side, the better protected you will be from unlawful discrimination at work.
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