Workplace discrimination goes far beyond simple harassment. Although it certainly includes harassment, it also includes much more destructive acts like refusing to hire or promote individuals who are not the “preferred” race, sex, or ethnicity and terminating individuals based on factors other than their job performance.
Discrimination in the workplace is illegal. Despite this, many victims of discrimination are hesitant to report their experiences to their supervisors and their companies’ Human Resources departments out of a fear of retaliation. Retaliation, which is the negative treatment of an individual after he or she has acted in a manner deemed to be “unacceptable” to the employer, is also illegal. If you have been a victim of discrimination or retaliation in your workplace, speak with an experienced employment lawyer about taking action.
Discrimination is the unfair treatment of an individual or group based on an innate characteristic, such as one of the following:
When the unfair treatment is severe to the point of negatively impacting the victim’s ability to perform his or her job, it is considered to be discrimination. Discrimination can include harassment, targeting one specific individual or group for certain tasks or treatment, and taking steps to actively keep an individual or group out of the company or out of a specific role.
Workplace discrimination can be subtle or overt. A few examples of workplace discrimination include:
Discrimination in the workplace based on any of the protected classes listed in Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 is illegal. If you experience discrimination from your employer, you have the right to work with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) to pursue a discrimination claim.
But first, see if you can resolve the issue within your company. Do this by speaking with your supervisor about the discriminatory behavior you experienced and if your supervisor cannot or will not make it stop, speak with your company’s Human Resources department. In most cases, discrimination issues can be resolved at this level.
If yours cannot be resolved by HR, speak with an employment lawyer about filing a claim with the EEOC. The EEOC will then investigate your claim to determine if any illegal discrimination occurred. If so, you may be entitled to receive compensation for your damages.
If you are a victim of discrimination in your workplace, do not assume there is nothing you can do to make it stop. You can file a discrimination claim against your employer and potentially receive compensation for the damages you suffered as a result of your employer’s discriminatory behavior. To learn more, set up your free legal consultation with The Law Offices of Mitchell A. Kline to discuss your case with an experienced employment lawyer.