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Law Offices of Dan A. Atkerson

Who Is Protected from Workplace Discrimination in Texas?

By Dan Atkerson on May 11, 2016

Group of Multiethnic Diverse Business People

Workplace discrimination in Texas is, like in every other state, a very serious problem. Federal law protects a variety of classes under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, but employers continue to discriminate against current employees and applicants every day.

Who Is Protected from Discrimination by Federal Law?

Federal law prohibits employers from work discrimination against anyone who falls under a protected class, which includes:

  • Race
  • Color
  • Religion
  • National Origin
  • Sex
  • Age (Over 40)
  • Disability
  • Genetic Information
  • Citizenship Status
Furthermore, a number of cities (including Dallas, Austin, Plano, and Ft. Worth) have ordinances in place to restrict discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity in the private workforce. Many other Texas cities prohibit LGBT discrimination in city employment as well.

Are Small Businesses Also Covered by Workplace Discrimination Law?

Companies with 15 or more employees are covered by Title VII, the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act. These statutes protect employees from discrimination based on race, color, sex, national origin, religion, disability and genetic information.

Businesses that employ 20 or more people are also covered by the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, which prohibits employers from discriminating against people over 40.

Employers with four or more people working for them are also banned from discriminating based on an employee’s or applicant’s citizenship status. In addition, state antidiscrimination laws cover companies with 15 or more employees.

The Equal Pay Act covers all employers of all sizes and strictly prohibits them from paying men and women different amounts for the same work.

What Should I Do About Workplace Discrimination?

Nobody should have to tolerate workplace discrimination. Illegal discrimination can prevent people from earning the necessary income needed to pay for housing and food. If you are a victim of discrimination, leave a complaint with your company’s human resources department. If that does not immediately remedy the problem, you may want to contact an experienced employment lawyer to find other solutions.

No one should be fired due to discrimination. Our Dallas employment attorney has had success representing clients who suffered discrimination in the workplace including wrongful termination, harassment and FMLA violations.

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