Despite widespread media coverage of the damaging effects of racism and sexism at work, New Yorkers continue to face harassment and discrimination on the job. Dealing with workplace discrimination can be emotionally devastating as well as damaging to a person’s career. This may be exacerbated if an employee suffers retaliation after attempting to address the issue. In other cases, a worker’s justified fear of retaliation may be so great that they are hesitant to speak up about the mistreatment at all. By understanding their rights, workers are better able to protect themselves and challenge unjust treatment at work.
Employees have a right to work free of discrimination based on race, sex, disability, religion, age or national origin. They also have a right to be free of retaliation for attempting to put a stop to workplace discrimination or other unacceptable practices like sexual harassment. There are many types of employment discrimination, all of which can hold someone back from success on the job. An individual may be unjustly fired, denied promotions or never hired at all. A severe or pervasive environment of sexual harassment can also fundamentally interfere with the workplace.
Both state and federal laws in New York prohibit workplace discrimination. Those who are facing harassment on the job may want to keep detailed notes of discriminatory treatment as well as a chronology of events. It can also be important to track the effects these actions had on the victim of discrimination or harassment. While many fear retaliation, reporting the mistreatment can be an important step in seeking justice.
When an employee faces sexual harassment on the job, they may deal with a serious threat to their livelihood as well as a severely harmful experience. An employment law attorney could provide advice and guidance on the next steps a worker can take to pursue justice.