Under Illinois’ anti-workplace discrimination law, sexual orientation and gender identity are protected classes. This is not the case with the federal anti-discrimination law, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
If you face discrimination at work based on your actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity, you have the right to file a discrimination claim with the Illinois Department of Human Rights (IDHR.) Additionally, you can file a discrimination claim with the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) because although sexual orientation and gender identity are not federally protected classes, instances of these types of discrimination may also be considered acts of sex discrimination.
Like all other types of discrimination, sexual orientation discrimination takes many forms. Examples of sexual orientation discrimination that can occur in the workplace include:
Document everything, from the date and time of face-to-face harassment incidents to copies of emails and messages that you feel are discriminatory. This documentation will be the evidence you use to support your discrimination claim if you choose to file one later.
Talk to your supervisor about the treatment you are facing. Document this interaction. Then, report the treatment you are facing with Human Resources. Document this interaction as well. If the company cannot resolve the issue internally, discuss your case with a lawyer who can advise you about pursuing a claim with the IDHR or EEOC. Keep in mind that although this could lead to a settlement for your damages, it might not. If the latter happens, you may pursue compensation through a discrimination lawsuit. If you face retaliation for filing a discrimination claim, your lawyer can help you handle it and seek appropriate compensation for those damages.
When you suffer financial damages because of the discrimination you face at work because of your sexual orientation, you have the right to pursue compensation for those damages through a discrimination claim. To learn more, contact the Law Office of Mitchell A. Kline today to set up your initial legal consultation with an experienced employment lawyer. We can answer any questions you have and help you pursue the compensation you deserve.