Common Types Of Workplace Discrimination
Employers have ways of discriminating that may not always be obvious. Discrimination can be as bold as firing someone for speaking Spanish or as subtle as refusing to promote an older worker who may be nearing retirement.
Common types of discrimination in the workplace include:
- Retaliation for reporting or refusing to comply with an illegal directive, whistleblowing
- Retaliation for reporting government contract fraud, qui tam claims
- Age (over 40)
- Race, Ethnicity or National Origin
- Sex or Gender
- Sexual Orientation or Gender Identity
- Disability or Medical Condition
- Pregnancy, Family or Medical Leave
- Family or Marital Status
- Religion, or professing no faith
If you believe your employer’s policies or actions are discriminatory, you may have a valid claim for damages under state or federal law.
Some Common Types Of Workplace Harassment
Harassment can best be described as insults and physical gestures that communicate hostility toward a person based on a protected characteristic. While we often think of harassment as being sexual in nature (i.e. inappropriate comments about clothing or appearance or requests for sexual favors), harassment can take many forms, including:
• Requests for sexual favors in exchange for employment or employment benefits (quid pro quo)
• Sexual comments or comments of a sexual nature
• Insults based upon a protected characteristic (racial slurs, epithets, stereotypes)
• Visual harassment (sharing of offensive pictures, videos or items)
• Offensive gestures (pantomiming sexual acts or violent acts connected with a protected characteristic)
• Negative comments based upon a protected characteristic (speaking negatively about a racial or ethnic group, offensive comments about people with disabilities)
• Physical contact (groping, hitting, touching)
To be actionable, harassment must be either severe (extreme) or pervasive (frequent or widespread. If you believe that you have been the victim of harassment based upon a protected characteristic, you may be entitled to compensation for the injuries this conduct has caused you.