There are many ways that California employees suffer from discrimination. It could be discrimination based on race, national origin, sexual preference, gender, political persuasion, disability and other issues. Regardless of the type of discrimination, workers may be able to seek protection from the discriminatory treatment under federal law. These powerful protections give workers the right to hold their employers legally accountable and financially liable for the harm that the discriminatory actions caused.
In order for a worker to protect his or her rights, however, it’s important for victims of discrimination to prove that a “pattern” of discriminatory behavior existed. Here are various patterns of behavior that workers should look out for:
1. Is there a high turnover rate for a specific class (or classes) of employees?
Workers may want to observe their workplaces to determine if one specific race, gender or class of employee is more prevalent than another. They may also want to check if there’s a high turnover rate for a specific type of employee.
2. Does the employer use a derogatory or demeaning tone with one type of employee?
Some California employers create a workplace culture in which women suffer constant debasement and demeaning comments. Other times, a workplace could have a pattern of speaking to and treating Latinos or Asians badly.
3. Does the employer reserve better assignments and opportunities for certain employees?
Discriminatory employers might reveal themselves by consistently assigning the best jobs and opportunities to employees from one race, gender or national origin.
One of the challenges of pursuing such a claim relates to how difficult it can be to prove that discrimination occurred. If it comes down to a he-said-she-said argument, for example, a worker could have a hard time proving definitively what was done or said to them, and by whom. For this reason, workers should be on the lookout for the above signs of workplace discrimination, which could help support their potential claims for damages.