When employees in California witness or experience inappropriate or discriminatory behavior in the workplace, they may want to take action but be concerned about the potential to face retaliation. In fact, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission noted that retaliation is a common form of discrimination in and of itself. Equal employment laws prohibit workers or even job applicants from being punished or targeted because they complained about discrimination or asserted their rights regarding workplace harassment. Employers that fire workers, cut their hours or deny them raises as a result of raising these issues are violating the law.
The Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) is designed to prevent workers who are 40 or older from being treated differently by their employers. It applies to employers in California and throughout the United States that have 20 or more employees. This is true whether the employer is in the private sector or is a state or local government. Furthermore, ADEA applies to the federal government and labor unions.