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What California classifies as employee discrimination

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Discrimination stems from hate of many kinds. This includes dislike due to age, sex, race, skin color, religion and pregnancy. Employment is one area where you may experience prejudice or disadvantage both in the hiring process and in your job.

If you experience unfairness in the workplace, you have the right to file a lawsuit against your employer. In most cases, you need to report it on a federal level to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission first. You may also file a charge on a lower level (state or local). If federal laws apply in that instance, your report also goes to the EEOC. What exactly counts as employee discrimination in California though?

Failure to provide leave to parents in certain situations

In the state of California, if you are a parent or prospective parent, the law may require your employer to give you leave. This may apply in the following situations (depending on the size of your workplace):

  • You are having a baby (or your spouse is having one)
  • You have a disability from childbirth, pregnancy or a related health problem
  • Your child has suffered a severe health complaint
  • You are adopting a child or beginning to foster one

Harassment due to belonging to a “protected” status

In California, it is illegal to harass employees based on being in one of several “protected” categories. Public humiliation, insulting jokes, threats, physical altercations, preferential treatment and any bullying or hostile behavior constitute harassment.

Discrimination in any business practice

California bans discrimination in the application, interviewing and hiring processes and in advertisement. Employee organizations and programs cannot deny you entry based on discriminatory factors.

It is important to report discrimination through proper channels when you encounter it. This protects you and others who might experience intolerance due to uncontrollable circumstances.