California Employment Discrimination Lawyer
Despite the fact that there are many federal, state, and local laws in place that prohibit discrimination in the workplace and require equal rights to all employees, the laws are not always followed. Institutional racism, ageism, bigotry, sexism, and other forms of discrimination still exist and not only affect millions of Americans in their daily and personal lives, but in the workplace as well. Discrimination creates a toxic environment, and one that should not be tolerated by any employee of the company. Unfortunately, the vast majority of discrimination cases are never reported and no action is taken against the perpetrating employer, including bosses and coworkers.
If you have lived with the hardships of being discriminated against at your job, you know just how awful the experience is. Contact our Burbank, California office today to schedule a consultation with a California employment discrimination lawyer immediately if you have any questions about what your rights are as an employee working in California.
State and Federal Laws Both Prohibit Workplace Discrimination
California has a long history of prohibiting discrimination and harassment in the workplace on the basis of protected traits. What are protected traits? Under the California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) protected traits include ancestry/creed, age, color, disability, genetics, gender, gender expression or identity, marital status, military or veteran status, nationality, race, religion, sex, and sexual orientation. Under FEHA, it is illegal for an employer to discriminate or harass an employee or prospective employee because of their protected traits. This is true from the hiring process, during employment, and through termination. Additionally, there are federal laws in place that ban workplace discrimination on the basis of protected traits as well. Title VII of the Civil Right Act of 1964 prohibits discrimination based on race, color, age, religion, sex, disability, or national origin. The Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) prohibits discrimination on the basis of age. Additionally, the Americans with Disabilities Act as Amended (ADAAA) prohibits discrimination on the basis of an individual’s disability– and requires employers to engage in a good faith, interactive process to determine whether an employee’s disability can be accommodated in the workplace.
What Constitutes Discrimination?
Employees’ rights under anti-discrimination and harassment laws begin even during the hiring process. Employment discrimination can also consist of refusing to interview or hire an individual because of a protected characteristic, refusing to offer a raise, or failing to hire or promote an individual based on his or her ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, age, etc. It can consist of harassment on the job, ridicule, and other forms of retaliation when based on a protected trait. While an employer has the right to choose the best person for the job offered and to promote or give a raise to those whom they deem most worthy, they cannot make those decisions based on any characteristics protected under the law.
Similarly, it is a violation of the law for an employer to retaliate against an employee who makes a claim for discrimination or harassment or otherwise complains about prohibited treatment in the workplace. Retaliation can take many forms – some blatant and others less overt. Retaliation may include a demotion, reduction in pay, unfavorable change in working conditions, denial of promotion, or even termination. Under both California and federal law, retaliation is illegal.
Contact Our California Discrimination Lawyers Today to Discuss What You May be Entitled to as Compensation
Depending on what type of discrimination or harassment you have faced, you may be owed lost wages or compensation for the pain and suffering that you faced. If you have been discriminated against, contact an experienced California employment discrimination lawyer at the law office in Burbank, CA of Scott • Wagner and Associates today.