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What constitutes workplace discrimination?

On Behalf of | Jan 25, 2022 | Discrimination, Workplace Discrimination

Workplace discrimination is a problem in Colorado as well as throughout the United States. However, for as many workers who are impacted by it, discrimination can be a hard term to define. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission offers useful insights into the types of employment-based practices that can suggest the presence on discrimination in a workplace.

Unfair treatment and/or harassment

Often, workplace discrimination takes the form of unfair treatment or harassment. Unfair treatment can include, but is not limited to:

  • Denying a worker a promotion based on their inclusion in a protected class
  • Treating a worker differently because of their inclusion in a protected class
  • Failing to appropriately compensate a worker because of their inclusion in a protected class

Harassment involves creating hostile work environments, subjecting workers to verbal attacks or abuse, and other forms of harassment because of their inclusion in protected classes.

Denial of workplace changes and retaliation

Some workers, because of their protected classes, may need different work accommodations or schedules. When an employer denies a reasonable workplace change, they may commit discrimination. Similarly, when a worker is punished or suffers because of taking a rightful action against their employer in a work-related matter, they may suffer retaliation as a result.

Questions and disclosures about medical information

A final category of discrimination that a worker may suffer concerns the use or disclosure of their medical information by their employer. Employers who release employees’ protected medical information may create discriminatory situations in their workplaces.

Discrimination at work can look very different from case to case. When a worker feels that they have suffered at work, they can learn more about their rights and options to seek relief.