Some employees in California who face sexual harassment at work may be reluctant to report it. According to a study by CareerBuilder, almost three-fourths of people who are harassed at work do not report report their incidents, and over half say they never confront the harasser. Fear of retaliation is one of several reasons people may not pursue a sexual harassment claim.
Two women recently filed cases against AT&T Mobility alleging pregnancy discrimination. The women asserted that their termination was a result of discrimination, stating that the company's attendance policy discriminates against pregnant women. Large employers in California and throughout the U.S. could be affected by the outcome of this case.
A former 30-year employee received a multimillion-dollar jury verdict in a recent lawsuit against his old employer. The plaintiff, employed by a major insurance company, was awarded more than $2 million in compensatory damages and an additional $16 million in punitive damages when it was found that the company violated California state law when terminating him.
Many workers in California are forced to deal with workplace harassment and discrimination. While these two terms are often used together, they are distinct. Discrimination usually involves work-related unfair treatment based on a protected category like race or gender. For example, if a woman is denied a promotion due the fact she is a woman, she is the subject of discrimination. Harassment may happen at work, but it isn't directly related to work. A manager may make belittling or derogatory comments about a person's religion, for example. While these two issues are separate, with differing legal standards, they also share a critical link that employers may overlook.
Employment discrimination isn't ever acceptable. People can't control some aspects of their lives, including what race or color they are. There are specific laws that make it illegal for employers to treat people of any color or race differently than others.