Employee Issue:

Sex Discrimination

Sex discrimination occurs when an employer discriminates against an employee on the basis of sex. To constitute sex discrimination, the behavior must be both different and unequal. For instance, requiring male and female employees to use separate bathrooms would not be considered sex discrimination. Sex discrimination occurs when an employer establishes different criteria for men and women regarding promotions, compensation, hiring, bonuses and other employment conditions.

If you have experienced sex discrimination at your job, fill out our free case review form on the right. A sex discrimination attorney can evaluate your claim, at no cost to you, to determine whether you are eligible for a lawsuit.

Sex Discrimination Laws

The Civil Rights Act of 1964, specifically Title VII, offers strong protections for employees. Title VII prohibits an employer from refusing to hire, terminating or otherwise discriminating against current or potential employees on the basis of sex. In addition, federal sex discrimination laws prohibit employers from restricting, separating or classifying current or potential employees in a way that would deprive the worker of employment opportunities because of their sex.

Title VII also prohibits:

  • Sex discrimination in apprenticeship or on-the-job programs
  • Employer retaliation for filing a sex discrimination claim or otherwise exercising employee rights
  • Placing sexually stereotyped employment ads

Sexual Harassment

Sexual harassment in the workplace is also prohibited by federal sex discrimination laws. In addition to exercising fair and equal employment practices, employers have a duty to end workplace sexual harassment. If an employer knows or should have known that sexual harassment is occurring, they are obligated to remedy the situation. This applies to cases of quid pro quo harassment, which occurs when a manager, supervisor or other worker with authority asks an employee for sexual favors in exchange for job benefits. Employers must also handle hostile work environment harassment, a form of sex discrimination that occurs when unwanted sexual advances lead to an intimidating workplace or interfere with a worker’s ability to perform their job.

Employers are prohibited from making sexual conduct a condition of employment; basing employment decisions on sexual conduct; or allowing sexual behavior that affects employee performance or creates an offensive work environment. Crude remarks, unwelcomed touching, sexually suggestive e-mails, photos or posters can be considered sexual harassment if they interfere with a worker’s ability to perform.

In the past few decades, courts have taken major steps to prevent sex discrimination. While many companies have grievance procedures for sex discrimination complaints, some workers may need additional help. If you have experienced sex discrimination in the workplace, an employment discrimination attorney can help protect your rights and explain your options. To contact a sex discrimination lawyer today, fill out the free case review form on the right.