Opponents of worker discrimination in California and across the country scored a major victory with the 1964 Civil Rights Act. Before the protections provided by the Act, workers from disenfranchised groups often found themselves languishing in poor working conditions due to factors like the color of their skin, gender and other attributes their employers perceived as deficiencies.
These protections have proved themselves effective as a preventative measure but have not completely eradicated workplace discrimination. More than three decades later, the fight for equal rights in the workplace is ongoing, and several decisions that the Supreme Court made in 2020 support this cause.
LGBT worker protection
Those who support workplace protections for LGBT workers characterize a June 2020 decision from the Supreme Court as a watershed event. The Court decided that protections against workplace discrimination included in the Civil Rights Act apply to gay and transgender workers. The decision is the culmination of a long fight from LGBT advocates to expand these protections to include members of the LGBT community.
Age bias standards
The justices decided that federal workers enjoy a lower bar for proving age bias in the workplace than individuals employed by private companies. The main difference in applying these regulations is that federal workers do not need to show that age bias was the only reason for firings or problems. This requirement does apply to private company workers.
Teachers generally possess the right to challenge the hiring and firing practices of their employers. Title VII of the Civil Rights Act includes the provisions that grant these rights. The Court decided, however, that these rights do not apply to teachers working at religious schools. The Court ruled the hiring and supervision of teachers at religious institutions are central to its mission. Interfering with this process would represent a violation of the First Amendment.
A worker who performs his or her job duties in good faith deserves the same rights and benefits as all other employees. The possession of these rights is not subject to age, gender, race or any other distinguishing factors. Individuals suffering mistreatment in the workplace may benefit from a talk with an attorney.