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What Is Considered Discrimination In the Workplace?

In the state of California, it is illegal for an employer to discriminate against an employee or job applicant based on their race, religion, gender, or national origin. Under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, it is unlawful for employers to discriminate in the following areas:

  • Hiring Employees
  • Firing or Laying Off Employees
  • Promoting Employees
  • Referring Employees to Other Employers

These provisions are enforced by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).

Is Harassment Considered Discrimination?

Harassment from an employer based on a person’s race, color, religion, sex, age, or nationality is considered a form of workplace discrimination. Harassment in the workplace covers any unwanted behaviors or actions from co-workers, managers, clients, and other people you work with.  

Types of Workplace Discrimination

In addition to what we have discussed so far, workplace discrimination can also be based on disabilities, genetic information, pregnancy, or your relationship to another person. Discrimination in the workplace happens if you are adversely affected by discriminatory actions or behaviors aimed towards you because of your association with a protected class of people. 

Employers commonly discriminate against their employees because of their:

  • Age
  • Race
  • Skin Color
  • Gender
  • Ethnicity
  • National Origin
  • Genetic Information
  • Pregnancy or Parenthood
  • Religious Beliefs
  • Political Affiliation
  • Mental or Physical Disability

Unlawful Discrimination in the Workplace

Hostile work environments are also covered under harassment and discrimination laws. When an employer harasses or discriminates against an employee and their actions interferes with the employee’s ability to perform their job duties, the employer can be sued for facilitating a hostile workplace. In some situations, the types of discrimination listed above can also be grounds for a hostile workplace lawsuit.

It is important to remember that employment discrimination can happen in any aspect of your employment. Employers are not allowed to make assumptions about you because of stereotypes regarding race, gender, religion, or age. Employers also cannot assume that an employee is incapable of working because they have a disability.

In addition to these legal guidelines, companies are prohibited from keeping employment opportunities from an employee because of their association with a certain race, religion, ethnicity, or political party.

It is also illegal for an employer to retaliate against you if you have filed a workplace discrimination complaint with the EEOC.

Have you been discriminated against by your employer or co-workers? Our lawyers can help you. At Habbas & Associates, we help workers in California fight for the rights that they are entitled to. We are here to help you hold your employer accountable for their actions and we are ready to aggressively pursue your interests.

Contact our San Jose team of workplace discrimination lawyers to set up your free case consultation today. 

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