Types of Employment Discrimination

The United States Equal Opportunity Commission has defined ten common forms of employment discrimination. The definition of employment discrimination is a disparity in treatment of individual employees, based on their personal or social differences.

The following is a list of ways that employers can discriminate amongst their employees in the workplace:

  • The employer may refuse to hire or fire employees that they do not accept.
  • He or she may deny an individual just compensation, assignment or classification
  • The employer may also deny a promotion or target specific individuals in a layoff
  • He or she may use discriminatory recruitment or testing policies.
  • He or she may deny certain groups the usage of company facilities.
  • The employer may refuse to offer the same fringe benefits and retirement opportunities.

The aforementioned actions may be punishable by law. Only in rare circumstances of "unintentional discrimination," can an employer be excused for discriminating against employees or potential employees. Unintentional discrimination is defined and described in the second section of this paper, but first, social and personal differences that are often the motives for discrimination are listed below.

If you may need legal assistance regarding a Discrimination Matter, consult with an Employment Lawyer in your area for a free case review in exploring your legal options.

Ten Most Common Forms of Discrimination

As previously stated, ten differences are the most commonly seen reasons to discriminate against individuals in the workplace. Studies have shown that employers tend to choose and favor employees that remind them of themselves. Therefore, not all discrimination may be malicious, simply human nature. However, it remains illegal, and there are certain forms of discrimination, which are punishable by law.

These include, but are not limited to (taken from http://www.eeoc.gov/types/index.html):

The last offense is even more serious, and if malicious intent can be proven, the offender may spend time in jail. In general, these items are unrelated to the performance of an individual employee. For this reason, it is illegal to keep them from working or from earning the same benefits as the majority of employees. However, in some cases, where the person's sex or physical appearance does play a role in his or her ability to perform the assigned task satisfactorily, the employer may be able to claim unintentional discrimination, and be cleared of any charges.

Unintentional Discrimination

Unintentional discrimination can be claimed, if the employer makes a discriminatory decision that will have both a real and dramatic economic effect on his or her business. For instance, an employer in a warehouse can choose to not hire a person who is unable to lift a certain amount of weight, because they will be useless for the task at hand. Though cases of unintentional discrimination are rare, they do occur occasionally. It is important to know the forms of discrimination and ensure that no choices are being made based solely on personal or social differences, to avoid charges of employment discrimination.

If you may need legal assistance regarding a Discrimination Matter, consult with an Employment Lawyer in your area for a free case review in exploring your legal options.
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