Los Angeles Employment Law Blog
In California, labor laws protect women from workplace harassment or discrimination by employers on the basis of pregnancy. Pregnancy discrimination occurs when a pregnant employee or job applicant receives less favorable treatment because they are pregnant or may someday become pregnant. Retaliation laws are in place to protect anyone who reports or opposes any pregnancy-related discriminatory workplace practices, even if they are not a direct victim of the unlawful conduct.
In our first article, we discussed the steps California has taken to ensure equal pay for equal work and what managers and executives need to do to stay compliant with these laws in California. However, in the entertainment industry as well as other venues (even sometimes law firms), equal work can be difficult to define or prove, as highly skilled and creative individuals carve out specialized roles within the industry.
2020 has been, among other things, a year in which a spotlight has shone on the issue of inequality in a variety of areas. Those in California are no strangers to the issue of equality, especially in terms of pay, as it has been a hotbed issue for the last several years.
For years we have fought for gender equality on all levels of employment. From equal pay to equal opportunity in hiring, there are many fronts on which we seek gender equality. However, one experience is unlikely to be available to all genders, at least in this lifetime: pregnancy.
The gender wage gap is real. In short, women earn less than men for doing the same work. According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, the gender wage gap in California has ranged between 10% and 17% over the last 20 years.
In a previous post, we briefly touched on the passage of Assembly Bill 1947 (AB 1947), which California Governor Gavin Newsom signed on September 30, 2020. This new anti-retaliation legislation amends California’s Labor Code regarding employer retaliation against whistleblowers. The law provides a longer period of time for whistleblowers to file a retaliation claim and allows courts to award attorney fees to whistleblowers.
Governor Gavin Newsom signed a slate of pro-employee legislation into law in the past month, including critical freelancer/independent contractor and family leave laws. In addition, businesses with more than 100 employees are now required to report data on salary by gender and race to the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing, providing more transparency into the wage gap.
Families in California should celebrate. Governor Newsom signed SB1383 into law, significantly expanding California’s family and medical leave coverage. The bill will go into effect January 1, 2021. Previously, only people who worked at companies of 50 or more employees were covered by the California Family Rights Act (CFRA). Now employees who work for smaller employers are covered, too.
If you were offered a job, but it required you to give up certain rights, including the right to sue your prospective employer over future employment law violations, would you take it? You’re competent, easy to get along with and professional, so if that offer has the right number of zeroes behind it, you probably would, right? Now what if you found out that giving up those rights enabled your employer to cover up multiple employee claims of sexual impropriety on the part of an executive spanning a decade or more?
According to the United Nations International Labor Organization, the economic crisis and the continued decline in working hours caused by the COVID-19 pandemic will impact 1.6 billion workers, or half the global workforce.
How Can We Help?
* Denotes a Required Field
By submitting the email form above, you agree to the following disclaimer:
The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.