There are many different ways that workplace discrimination can occur. Regardless of the particular manifestation, however, discrimination is always a violation of employee rights in the workplace. One of the lesser discussed types of discrimination is age discrimination. Age discrimination is a significant concern, however--so much so that there is federal legislation that protects against it.
The workplace should be a place that is safe and comfortable for everyone working there. Unfortunately, this is not the reality for many people who suffer sexual harassment at the workplace. Sexual harassment is frequently misunderstood and many people may contribute to creating a hostile work environment for others simply because they do not understand what kinds of actions are included in the general term "sexual harassment."
In January of 2015, newly elected DC Mayor Muriel E. Bowser signed into law The Reproductive Health Non-Discrimination Amendment Act. The Act broadened the definition of discrimination and made it illegal for an employer to discriminate against an employee who seeks contraception or family planning services. Under the Act, it would also be unlawful for an employer to discriminate based on the employee's decision to use medical treatments to either induce or terminate pregnancy. The Act, however, stalled under review by the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, who voted 20-16 to block the law.
When employees are denied the wages to which they are entitled, or the overtime pay which they have earned, their rights are being violated. Because of the power differential between employers and employees, however, many employees do not know how to effectively advocate for themselves and ensure that they receive fair pay for their work. Fortunately, there are many different laws that can help employees who have wage and hour claims. In some situations, when there are widespread violations, employees may band together to file a lawsuit against employers.
As an employee, you may hesitate to protect your rights at your workplace because of the risk of losing your job. For most people, their jobs are critically important, and they would face severe hardship from a sudden termination. However, no employee should hesitate to protect his or her rights in the workplace. The first step to adequately protecting yourself is understanding exactly what rights you have and how the federal and state laws can protect you and provide recourse.
While most of us know that sexual harassment is not a good thing, many people in Washington, D.C., are not aware of what behavior constitutes unlawful sexual harassment. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits sexual harassment as a form of unlawful sex discrimination. The law is applicable to places of employment that have 15 or more workers and this includes labor organizations, federal government jobs and employment agencies.