Workplace Discrimination

Overview

Discrimination means classifying people on the basis of various categories, and showing bias to one group over the other. It also means different treatment given to the members of the same group. Criteria of discrimination are generally centered on race, gender, religion, age, disability, language etc. Discrimination in workplace is a burning issue around the globe. Texas makes it illegal for an employer to discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, age, or disability.

Types Of Discrimination

A person may be discriminated in his/her job, but due to his/her ignorance he/she may not be aware that he/she is being discriminated. Therefore, it is pertinent for everyone to acquaint oneself with the different types of discrimination. Some of them are as follows:

Age Discrimination: This kind of discrimination happens when a person is discriminated on the basis of his/her age. There is a federal law namely the Age Discrimination In Employment Act (ADEA). According to ADEA, if an individual aged 40 years or above is discriminated on job then he is protected. An instance of age discrimination is, when a senior worker is thrown out of job to be substituted by a younger worker.

Disability Discrimination: This type of discrimination occurs when an individual is treated differently in the workplace based on his/her disability. Disability can be mental disability (person suffering from psychological problem) or physical disability (physically handicapped). If a person is harassed or teased in the workplace due to his/her disability that amounts to disability discrimination.

Race Discrimination: when an individual is treated differently from his coworkers because of his/her race, color, or origin it amounts to race discrimination. When a colored employee and a white employee are holding the similar position in the workplace, but only the white employee is getting salary hike and job appreciation, when coworkers indulges in jokes insulting the colored coworker and if the employer does not take any action against the white worker etc. Are some instance of racial discrimination. Sometimes race discrimination can occur along side with age, sex, or disability discrimination. It is considered illegal to discriminate against African-Americans.

Retaliation

Retaliation is considered a weapon in the hands of the employer, who uses it against the employee, when the employee raises against the employer to enforce his/her legal right. Before claiming an action against the employer for discrimination there are some factors to be considered to determine whether discrimination played a part in one’s termination. There are some federal anti-discrimination laws to the protection persons who fall into some “protected class” of persons that the particular law covers. However, the initial burden to prove retaliation is upon the employee. The employee is to show the following: he/she is involved in a protected activity (filing a complaint against the Department of Labor, reporting sexual harassment etc.,); the job was performed according to the employers expected standards; despite of meeting the employer’s job standards he/she suffered many adversities on job; the employee was treated differently(less favorably) from the other employees. Once the employee establishes the burden, then it shifts to the employer to prove that he/she did not discriminate against the employee.

Filing Discrimination

In Texas, there are two administrative agencies to file a discrimination claim. They are the Texas workforce Commission – Civil Rights Division (TWC-CRD), and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). These two agencies work hand-in -hand cooperating with each other in processing the claims. However, it is advisable for a state employee to file his/her discrimination claim with the state agency rather than the federal agency.

Conclusion

Texas State stands strongly against workplace discrimination, and gives wide opportunity to the discriminated employee to file a claim against the discriminating employer. Hence, it is time for every employee who is a victim of various types of discrimination, to rise up and fight an action to protect one’s legal right.