The Law Is on Your Side as a Victim of LGBTQIA+ Employment Discrimination
Workplace discrimination of any kind can be damaging both financially and psychologically. Up until recently, LGBTQIA+ employment discrimination was a gray area in law, but several landmark cases have shed light on the legal protection from discrimination the LGBTQIA+ community can expect.
DoNotPay is here to help you understand your rights and your options for fighting LGBTQIA+ employment discrimination and ensuring fair treatment at work!
Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 protects employees from workplace discrimination based on:
Under the terms of the act, you are protected from:
- De jure discrimination—the deliberate enactment of policies or practices to discriminate against groups or individuals
- De facto discrimination—allowing discrimination to occur despite company anti-discrimination policies
- Harassment—including all forms of sexual, verbal, and email harassment or cyberbullying
- Wage discrimination—paying less for the same work
- Retaliation—victimizing employees who complain about discrimination
Although it wasn’t clear whether the act protected the LGBTQIA+ community, a landmark 2020 case—Bostock v. Clayton County—gave clarity on the question and affirmed that LGBTQIA+ workplace discrimination constitutes sex discrimination and is illegal.
The judge’s ruling stated that “discrimination based on homosexuality or transgender status necessarily entails discrimination based on sex; the first cannot happen without the second.”
This means that LGBTQIA+ employment discrimination must be treated as sex or gender discrimination in the workplace.
This potential makes the path to justice much easier for members of the LGBTQIA+ community.
Before the Bostock v. Clayton County ruling, several states had enacted local legislation to clarify LGBTQIA+ status regarding employment discrimination. These states are:
|States With LGBTQIA+ Legislation|
|Arizona||Illinois||Maryland||New Hampshire||Rhode Island|
|Dist. of Columbia||Louisiana||Montana||Oregon|
Each state’s laws vary in the range of protection they offer—only 16 provide full protection against dismissal as a result of an employee’s LGBTQIA+ status.
- 36% of respondents said they had experienced employment discrimination in the preceding 12 months
- 53% of those surveyed claimed to have experienced discrimination in hiring processes
- 47% of respondents found difficulty in retaining a job and attributed this to harassment at work
- 65% of those surveyed said they had had to alter their behavior to fit in at work
While the numbers of cases may be small compared to the total workforce in the U.S., discrimination at work against the LGBTQ community seems to be more widespread than against other groups.
If you are experiencing LGBTQIA+ discrimination in the workplace, your first course of action is to try to resolve the matter internally by doing the following:
- Keep a diary
- Involve your HR department
- Check your company’s anti-discrimination policy
- Look up your state’s legislation
You should write down every incident of LGBTQIA+ employment discrimination against you, no matter how insignificant. The record should include:
- Details of the incident
- Names of perpetrators
- Details of any witnesses
Informing your HR department in writing is crucial to proving you have made every effort to resolve the case before resorting to legal action.
Your company’s policy should be aligned to the Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, meaning that your employer is—in theory—committed to avoiding discrimination at work.
If you live in one of the states with its own LGBTQ laws, you should familiarize yourself with what the law says.
If these steps do not help, you need to escalate your complaint to the Equal Employment Opportunities Commission (EEOC)—DoNotPay can !
Before you can contact a discrimination lawyer and launch a private lawsuit against your employer, you need to lodge a written complaint with the EEOC.
Your complaint—or charge of discrimination—contains all the details of your allegations against your employer. Once the EEOC has received your charge, they are mandated to:
- Inform your employer of the charge against them
- Investigate your case
- Suggest conciliation to reach a pre-trial settlement
- Commence legal action
- Give you written permission to sue
Filing your charge of discrimination can be a complex undertaking, but we can make it easier!
DoNotPay can take over the task of filing your charge of discrimination for you—here’s what you need to do:
- in your web browser
- Search for our Fight Workplace Discrimination product
- Give us the details of your case
DoNotPay will lodge your complaint with the nearest EEOC field office—they will contact you to walk you through the next steps.
After you report discrimination in the workplace, you can only hope everything will turn out great. We sure hope so too, but having a backup plan doesn’t hurt. If the report with the EEOC backfires, getting a lawyer will be the next logical step.
While you may understand the importance of professional legal help, you might be surprised by how much our virtual lawyer can do for you. Thanks to advanced AI technology, our app can assist you with:
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By subscribing to DoNotPay, you won’t have to waste hundreds of dollars on lawyers for the help you can get for a few bucks!
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