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2 min read

Age, Gender, Race, or Religion: Can My Employer Discriminate?

You have a right to equal employment opportunities, and the answer to "Can my employer discriminate against me based on my age, gender, race, or religion?" is a resounding no.

Equal opportunity employment laws are in place to ensure that individuals are not discriminated against based on their age, gender, race, or religion. The laws give you legal rights and protect you against these types of discrimination.

Let us look at each in a little more depth.

Age Discrimination

Age discrimination occurs when someone is treated unfairly or disadvantaged due to age. In the United States, the federal Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) protects individuals 40 or older from age-based discrimination in the workplace.

Employers are prohibited from making employment decisions based on age. These decisions include hiring, training, benefits, job assignments, promotions, layoffs, and termination.

It is important to note that the ADEA does not protect younger employees from age discrimination, although some states have state laws that protect younger workers.

The ADEA is enforced by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).

Gender Discrimination

Gender discrimination refers to the unequal treatment of someone based on their gender. Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits gender-based discrimination in the workplace, and the Equal Pay Act requires employers to give employees of all genders equal pay for equal work.

The laws prohibit employers from discriminating against employees or job applicants based on gender. This includes treatment involved in making hiring decisions, setting job responsibilities and salaries, providing promotions, performance evaluation standards, and/or creating a hostile work environment.

Gender discrimination can affect all genders, and it is important to be aware of your rights and report any instances of discrimination.

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Equal Pay Act are enforced by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).

Racial Discrimination

Racial discrimination involves mistreating someone based on their race or ethnic background. Numerous laws, including Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, prohibit racial discrimination in employment.

By law, employers are prohibited from making employment decisions based on race, including hiring, promotions, benefits, pay raises, and terminations. Racial discrimination can take many forms, including racial slurs, harassment, or unfair policies that disproportionately affect certain racial or ethnic groups.

Employees have the right to a workplace free from racial discrimination and should report any incidents promptly.

Religious Discrimination

In addition to protecting against race and gender discrimination, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 protects employees from religious discrimination. Religious discrimination occurs when someone is treated differently because of their religious beliefs or practices.

By law, employers must provide reasonable accommodations for employees' religious practices unless it would cause undue hardship to the business. This may include allowing flexible scheduling for religious observances or providing reasonable accommodations such as prayer spaces.

Employers are prohibited from making employment decisions based on an individual's religion, and employees have the right to practice their religion without fear of discrimination.

What to Do if You Have Experienced Age, Gender, Race, or Religious Discrimination in the Workplace

If you believe your employer has discriminated against you based on your age, gender, race, or religion, there are steps you can take to address the situation.

First, document any incidents or instances of discrimination. Be sure to include dates, times, and details of what occurred. Then, report the discrimination to your employer's human resources department or follow the designated reporting procedures outlined in your company's policies.

If internal avenues do not resolve the issue, you may consider filing a complaint with the appropriate government agency, such as the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).

A Labor and Employment attorney can help protect your rights and advise you on your options based on your specific case and circumstances.

We invite you to get a free consultation with the Labor and Employment Law Legal Team here at Whitcomb Selinsky, PC. Call (866) 433-4116 or click here to use our convenient online form to tell us how we can help.