When you hear the words “workplace discrimination,” you likely think about discrimination based on race, gender or sexual orientation. A less commonly talked about form of discrimination—which is nonetheless still an issue in the workplace—is pregnancy discrimination.
Workplace retaliation constitutes nearly 45 percent of all workplace discrimination claims, according to a recent report. This number represents a steep increase compared to 22 percent two decades ago. Experts say that vulnerable populations—immigrants and low-income workers—are especially susceptible to such treatment.
Recent reports indicate that safety in meat and poultry processing plants is a concern across the United States. What’s more, workers in these industries are afraid to speak out.
The state of Texas defines employment discrimination as any unfair treatment on the basis of race, color, disability, religion, sex, national origin, age or pregnancy. Such treatment could include refusing to hire a particular individual or giving an existing employee disadvantages because of any of the above factors.
Employment laws in the U.S. change more often than other areas of law. Courts and lawmakers are frequently reviewing, changing and expanding laws in an effort to adapt to and reflect modern workplaces and attitudes.
In accordance with Texas and federal laws, employers with at least 15 employees are required to provide reasonable accommodations to workers with disabilities. Failure to do so could lead to discrimination claims against the employer.
Ideally, all workplaces would treat employees and potential employees equally. Unfortunately, discriminatory conduct takes place in many institutions, and workers may find themselves having to take action to have the issues addressed. In many cases, filing reports with outside parties or taking legal action may prove necessary if internal complaints go unheeded.