Los Angeles Employment Law Blog
In general, doctors in California and other parts of the country are among the highest earners in the United States. However, results from a survey published in a leading medical journal show that more than a third of doctors questioned who are also mothers face some type of discrimination in the workplace. And it’s mainly because they have children. The anonymous survey is based on comments from approximately 6,000 respondents.
California employees who are pregnant or planning to become pregnant should be aware of discrimination laws concerning the legality of firing a pregnant employee. For example, an employer may illegally attempt to force a pregnant employee to take an unpaid leave of absence or risk losing her job.
The Equal Pay Act and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act seek to protect workers in California from discrimination. Although the acts obligate employers to treat people fairly regardless of their gender, race, religion or national origin, reality often falls short of the law, and mistreated employees must pursue legal complaints against their employers. The rights granted by these acts sometimes overlap, and a victim of discrimination might choose to file complaints based on one or both acts.
Workers in California should understand that discrimination based on gender is illegal. A company called KPMG was the subject of a lawsuit in 2011 claiming that men and women were paid differently. It also claimed that there were disparities in how men and women were promoted. The case won conditional collection action status under the Equal Pay Act in 2014. A motion was filed in November 2018 to get class certification for plaintiffs in the case.
While California protects employees from discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, this is not true for all states. The Supreme Court may rule on several cases regarding whether the protection from discrimination on the basis of sex offered by Title VII of the Civil Rights Act extends to protect people in the case of sexual orientation and gender identity.
In a competitive job market, factors such as skills, experience and attitude should determine eligibility for a job. However, even those who meet the requirements and come in for an interview can receive unfair judgment. Discrimination can and does happen even before an employer hires you. During the interview, certain questions are off the table to ensure a fair assessment. Yet, these questions often still come up, so it is important you recognize them.
California residents may be interested in a study that was published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. According to this report, over the past quarter century, there has been no decline in hiring discrimination against African-Americans. In 1989, white applicants received 36 percent higher callbacks than African-Americans applying for the same position and 24 percent more than Latinos.
Many California working mothers continue to face discrimination on the job, and their pay, hours and promotions have been repeatedly shown to take a hit after having children. This is true in comparison to fathers as well as people without kids. According to research conducted in 2005, women earn less money after every child, and this still appears to be the case. The issues that women face at work have continued to make headlines, as the Google walkout and resulting statement from the tech giant’s CEO about sexual harassment made clear.
Workers in California and around the country are protected against discrimination and harassment by federal laws like Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, but those who work as independent contractors or for temp agencies are not covered by such statutes. This is a serious issue because the American workplace is evolving and most of the people who work in what is known as the gig economy are considered independent contractors.
Nearly one-fifth of all American adults, including many in Los Angeles County, deal with mental health issues in a given year. According to the National Alliance on Mental Health, 43.8 million Americans are diagnosed with mental illnesses. There are a number of conditions that people frequently confront, including depression, anxiety or PTSD. There are also a number of mood disorders and other concerns that may arise.
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