Georgia Workplace Discrimination
Workplace discrimination occurs when a Georgia employer treats a person or group of people at work unfavorably because of a personal characteristic that is protected by law, also called a “protected characteristic.” If you believe you have been discriminated against at work on the basis of a protected characteristic, like your age, race, religion or national origin, you may have grounds to file an employment discrimination lawsuit against your employer, in order to recover financial compensation for any losses incurred as a result of the discrimination. Contact a reputable GA employment law attorney today to discuss your legal rights as an employee in Georgia under state and federal antidiscrimination laws.
Protected Characteristics in Georgia
Federal antidiscrimination laws like the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967, and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 were enacted to protected employees belonging to protected classes from unfair or unlawful treatment in the workplace, and these laws offer civil remedies for Georgia employees who are discriminated against on the basis of the following protected characteristics:
- National origin
- Sex (including pregnancy and childbirth)
- Age (40-70)
- Citizenship status
- Genetic information
Types of Employment Discrimination
In addition to federal antidiscrimination laws, the state of Georgia has passed the Georgia Age Discrimination Act, which prohibits discrimination against workers between the ages of 40 and 70, the Equal Employment for Persons with Disabilities Code, which prohibits discrimination because of a disability, the Equal Pay Act, which requires GA employers to pay employees equal wages for equal work regardless of their sex, and the Georgia Fair Employment Practices Act, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, disability, color, sex, religion, age or national origin. Discrimination can occur in virtually any aspect of the employment relationship, including:
- Firing (wrongful termination)
Another type of workplace discrimination that violates federal antidiscrimination laws is harassment, defined by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission as offensive or unwelcome conduct based on a protected characteristic, including offensive jokes, slurs, physical assaults, intimidation, ridicule, mockery or name-calling. In some cases, the harassment becomes severe and pervasive enough to create a “hostile work environment,” or a work environment that a reasonable person would consider hostile, abusive or intimidating. Employment discrimination may also be retaliatory, or perpetrated in retaliation for an employee exercising his rights by opposing discriminatory practices in the workplace, filing a discrimination charge, or participating in a discrimination investigation.
Contact an Experienced GA Discrimination Lawyer Today
As an employee in Georgia, you are protected by certain state and federal laws prohibiting discrimination, harassment and retaliation in the workplace, and it’s important that you know your rights if you have been the victim of employment discrimination. If you believe you have been subjected to unfair or unlawful treatment at your job, there are a number of steps you can take to protect your rights. In most cases, you will first file your discrimination complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) or the Georgia Commission on Equal Opportunity (GCEO), but you may also have grounds to file a private lawsuit against your employer, which you can do with the help of a qualified workplace discrimination attorney.