Perhaps you feel your employer terminated you due to your age. Perhaps another employee harassed you or made offensive comments regarding your religion or dress. Maybe your employer even denied you a promotion due to your marital status or disability.
In Michigan and throughout the United States, many individuals face hostile work environments, discrimination and harassment due to their protected classes. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) identifies ways that employers must protect these individuals, but many employees or potential employees face direct or indirect unfair treatment daily. Bringing a claim against your employer constitutes a brave act, but you may wish to hire an experienced employment law attorney to help you acquire evidence and present a sound claim for compensation.
According to the EEOC and Michigan Department of Civil Rights, no employer or employee has the authority to discriminate against a worker or applicant due to the following protected classes.
- Race or color
- National origin
- Arrest record
- Genetic information
- Height or weight
- Marital status
Harassment or discrimination from an employer or another employee occurs when an individual receives unfair or negative treatment due to these classes. For example:
- You may receive less pay for equal work due to your gender.
- You may face racist jokes from other employers due to your color.
- Your employer may not consider you for a promotion due to your weight.
- You may not have obtained a job offer due to your age.
- Your employer may have asked questions during the interview that revealed your sexual orientation.
Filing a claim against an employer
When you experience discrimination for your protected class, you may feel overwhelmed and emotional. Before filing, you may wish to hire a knowledgeable attorney, so that he or she can help you identify the specific acts of discrimination you faced at your workplace.
You want to collect all evidence related to your discrimination, such as emails or notes from conversations, so that you can provide proof to Michigan court. Then, you will file a complaint with the Michigan Department of Civil Rights office. You must file the claim within 180 days of the action or the continuous actions.
An attorney can help ensure you file all necessary documents timely. Do not fight alone for your right to freedom from discrimination in your workplace.