Discrimination is defined as the unfair and unjustified treatment of people based on real or perceived characteristics. Discrimination is generally prohibited in the workplace by a number of state and federal laws, but many employers still find themselves facing discrimination claims relating to a number of the business decisions they make.
Some discrimination claims can be tricky because employment decisions are often disguised as being alternative reasons other than discriminatory ones. You should seek representation from Los Angeles workplace discrimination lawyers if you think that you were recently discriminated against in your workplace.
Contact a Los Angeles Workplace Discrimination Attorney
If you were the victim of a discriminatory action in your Los Angeles workplace, you are going to want to be sure that you retain legal counsel to help hold your employer accountable. Arshakyan Law Firm handles many kinds of employment law cases in California and will know how to ensure you can achieve a measure of justice.
Our firm strongly believes in supporting employees who have been wronged by employers in instances of discrimination, so you can count on us to fight for you every step of the way along your journey to a resolution of your claims. Call (888) 851-5005 or contact us online to immediately schedule a no-obligation case consultation that will let you tell us in greater detail about your case and what we can do to help.
Protected Statuses The United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission identifies 13 categories relating to discrimination claims, which include:
- National Origin
- Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity
- Genetic Information
- Equal Pay/Compensation
- Sexual Harassment
Examples of Discrimination
Discrimination on the basis of race involves treating an applicant or employee unfavorably because they are of a certain race or may have personal characteristics associated with a certain race, such as hair texture or facial features. The phrase color discrimination relates to an employer treating an applicant or employee unfavorably because of their skin color complexion.
Age discrimination refers to an employer treating an applicant or employee less favorably because of their age. It is illegal to discriminate in regard to any aspect of employment, including pay, hiring, firing, assignments of employment, promotions, layoffs, training, or benefits.
The phrase national origin discrimination relates to an employer treating applicants or employees unfavorably because they are from a certain country or part of the world, because of their ethnicity or accent, or simply because they appear to be of a certain ethnic background, even when they might not be. National origin discrimination can also involve applicants or employees being treated unfavorably because they happen to be married to or in relationships with people of certain national origins.
Disability discrimination involves an employer covered by the Americans with Disabilities Act or the Rehabilitation Act treating a qualified employee or applicant unfavorably because they have a disability. Disability discrimination can also involve an employer treating an applicant or employee less favorably because they have a history of a disability or are believed to have a physical or mental impairment that is not transitory—meaning lasting or expected to last six months or less—and minor even when they do not have such an impairment.
Sex discrimination refers to an employer treating an applicant or employee unfavorably because of their sex, including their gender identity, sexual orientation, or pregnancy. The treatment may be a one-off action or could be caused by a rule or policy, but it does not have to be intentional to be unlawful.
Religious discrimination is when an employer treats an applicant or employee unfavorably because of their religious beliefs. Like national origin discrimination, religious
discrimination can also involve treating an applicant or employee differently because they are married to or in a relationship with a person of a particular religion.
Pregnancy discrimination is when an employer treats a female applicant or employee unfavorably because of her pregnancy, childbirth, or some medical condition related to pregnancy or childbirth. When a woman cannot perform the duties of her position temporarily because of a medical condition related to childbirth or pregnancy, the employer has to treat the woman the same way it would treat any other temporarily disabled employee.
Sexual orientation and gender identity discrimination involves an employer treating an applicant or employee unfavorably because of their sexual orientation or transgender status. An employer cannot fire, refuse to hire, or take assignments away or discriminate in any other way against an applicant or employee because customers or clients would prefer to work with someone who has a different sexual orientation or gender identity.
Genetic information is defined as including information about a person’s genetic tests and the genetic tests of their family members, as well as information about the manifestation of a disease or disorder in a person’s family members, otherwise known as a family medical history. A family medical history is often used to determine whether a person has an increased risk of getting a disease, disorder, or condition in the future, and employers cannot discriminate against employees or applicants because of genetic information.
Equal pay or compensation discrimination relates to the idea that men and women in the same workplace have to be given equal pay for equal work. The Equal Pay Act applies to all forms of pay, including base salary, bonuses, overtime pay, life insurance, vacation and holiday pay, stock options, reimbursement for travel expenses, profit sharing and bonus plans, cleaning or gasoline allowances, hotel accommodations, and other benefits.
The phrase sexual harassment relates to unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or other kinds of verbal or physical harassment that is sexual in nature by an employer. The harassment does not necessarily have to be of a sexual nature though, as sexual harassment can include offensive remarks about an applicant or employee’s sex.
The general term harassment relates to unwelcome conduct that is based on any of the listed protected statuses. Harassment will become unlawful when enduring offensive conduct is a condition of continued employment, or such conduct becomes pervasive or severe enough to create a work environment that a reasonable person would consider intimidating, hostile, or abusive.
The EEOC states that retaliation is the most frequently alleged basis of discrimination in the federal sector and the most common discrimination finding in federal sector cases. Employers cannot retaliate against applicants or employees for filing or being witnesses in EEOC charges, complaints, investigations, or lawsuits, communicating with supervisors or managers about employment discrimination, answering questions during employer investigations of alleged harassment, refusing to follow orders that would cause discrimination, resisting sexual advances or intervening to protect others, requesting accommodation of a disability or for religious practices, or asking co-workers about salary information to determine if there are potentially discriminatory wages.
Federal and State Laws
Federal laws intended to prevent discrimination in the workplace include Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which makes any discrimination against a person on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, or sex against the law as well as discrimination against women because of pregnancy, childbirth or any related health conditions. The Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) prohibits discrimination against a person age 40 or older because of their age.
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 both prohibit discrimination against people with disabilities. The Equal Pay Act of 1963 prohibits different rates of pay between women and men for the same work.
California state laws include the Tom Bane Civil Rights Act, otherwise known as the Bane Act, which authorizes suit against any employer or other party who by threats, intimidation, or coercion interferes with the exercise or enjoyment of constitutional rights without regard to whether the victim is a member of a protected class. The Unruh Civil Rights Act prohibits discrimination in housing and public accommodations based on religion, sex, national origin, race, color, citizenship, ancestry, marital status, disability, primary language, sexual orientation, medical condition, genetic information, or immigration status.
The California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) found in California Government Code § 12920 applies to both public and private employers as well as labor organizations and employment agencies. This law prohibits employers of five or more employees from discriminating against applicants and employees because of a protected category or retaliating because they asserted their rights under the law.
Los Angeles Workplace Discrimination Lawyer
Do you believe that you were discriminated against at your place of employment in the greater Los Angeles area? You should know that Arshakyan Law Firm has been fighting to protect the rights of employees all over California for decades.
Our firm knows that victims of discrimination are frequently uncertain about what they can do about their respective cases, and we will be able to walk you through the entire complaint process, so you are not left handling anything by yourself. You should call (888) 851-5005 or contact us online, so you can receive a free consultation that will let us sit down with you and have a long talk about how we can begin exercising your rights.