Discrimination can take on many forms in the workplace, including on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, age, sex, veteran status, disability or handicap, sexual orientation, or sexual identity. At Porter Law, we can help you deal with every element of these emotional and technically challenging cases.
Not Being Treated Fairly?
Like sexual harassment, employment discrimination denies employees their right to be treated with dignity and respect. With this type of discrimination, their membership in a protected class is the basis for treating them differently – or worse – than other employees.
It has nothing to do with performance and everything to do with intolerance. Sadly, in too many cases discrimination is still alive and well, and people are suffering because of it.
Two Forms Of Discrimination
Like sexual harassment, there are two forms of discrimination: hostile work environment and adverse employment action.
Hostile Work Environment
A hostile work environment is created when your supervisors or co-workers (or, in some instances, customers or vendors) say or do things that create a work environment that is so severe and pervasive that no reasonable employee could be expected to tolerate it.
- It could take the form of words – either spoken to or about you – or writings in the form of emails, texts, or other social media.
- It could be a one-time event if it is very severe, but frequently, the conduct takes place on multiple occasions.
- It could be one bad actor or it could be more than one.
Whatever form it takes, it can be emotionally devastating, and you do not have to just accept it. It is illegal under both federal and state law.
Adverse Employment Actions
Adverse employment action or disparate treatment occurs when you are treated differently from a similarly situated co-worker in your relationship with your employer. It could happen during hiring, promotion, discipline or termination. If you and a co-worker are doing basically the same job, the law requires that you be treated the same.
If you are paid less or given more work or disciplined more severely than a co-worker who is of a different race, gender, or other protected category, that could give rise to a claim of discrimination.