Ethnicity Discrimination Lawyer in California

The term “ethnicity” refers to ethnic traits, backgrounds, allegiances or associations. Usually, ethnicity refers to a certain group of people that have racial, linguistic, religious and other traits in common. Unfortunately, some people have negative feelings about members of certain ethnic groups based on stereotypes, prejudices or negative interactions they may have had with members of that ethnic group. If a person discriminates against a member of a particular ethnicity in the workplace, that person is violating state and federal law.

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, a federal law, prohibits discrimination in employment based on religion, national origin, race, color and sex, which generally includes ethnicity. In addition, California’s Fair Employment and Housing Act prohibits discrimination based on race, color, religion, national origin, ancestry and more. If a San Francisco Bay – Oakland area employer discriminates against someone on the basis of ethnicity, the job applicant or employee can file a federal claim, a state claim, or a federal or state lawsuit.

There are many areas connected with the employment process in which federal and state law protect people from ethnicity discrimination. Those areas include:

  • Recruiting, hiring and advancement. This means that job requirements must be uniformly applies to persons of all ethnicities. Although employers can obtain racial information, they can’t use that information in a discriminatory fashion.
  • Compensation, benefits, work assignments, training, performance evaluations, discipline, firing, and other areas of employment. Employers can’t discriminate in any of these areas based on ethnicity.
  • Retaliation. If an employee chooses to file a discrimination claim based on ethnicity, the employer can’t retaliate against the employer.
  • Harassment. Any workplace harassment because of ethnicity violates federal and state laws.
  • Classification and segregation of employees. Employees can’t be classified or segregated based on ethnicity. For example, minorities can’t be assigned to minority geographical areas.
  • Pre-employment requirements and inquiries. If an employer asks about a job applicant’s ethnicity, this information could be seen as being used to make a hiring decision, although in some cases the information is legitimately needed for affirmative action purposes.

Special Cases

Although employment discrimination based on ethnicity is illegal, in some cases a person’s membership in a certain ethnicity or religion can prohibit a person from performing a particular job. An employer is required to reasonably accommodate a person’s ethnic practices, but not if it’s an undue hardship on the employer. For example, if a female member of an ethnic or religious group that required its women to dress very modestly applied to work as a waitress at a sports bar in which the waitresses were required to wear skimpy outfits, it would probably be seen as an undue hardship on the bar to allow that waitress to forego the skimpy costume. However, if a member of an ethnic group wanted to be able to wear a certain hairstyle to an office job, that could be considered a reasonable accommodation and should be allowed. Reasonable accommodation generally includes reasonable adjustments, including shift swaps, flexible hours, changes to workplace policies or procedures, and job reassignments.

Contact Liberty Law If Experiencing Employment Discrimination

At Liberty Law, Micha Star Liberty believes that no employees or job applicants should be treated differently because they are members of a particular ethnic group. Instead, everyone should have the chance to prove his or her worth as an employee based on work performance. If you are in the Oakland – San Francisco Bay area, including Fairfield, Tracy, Concord, Fremont, Berkeley, and the surrounding area, and you have been discriminated against based on ethnicity in hiring, firing, promotion, or other areas of employment, call Micha Star Liberty, Oakland ethnicity discrimination lawyer at 415-896-1000 or 510-645-1000. She will help you determine the best course of action to pursue.



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