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What to know about California discrimination laws

On Behalf of | Dec 29, 2020 | Employment Law |

The state of California has some of the strongest employment laws in the United States. These laws are intended to protect employees from harassment, discrimination, retaliation and other issues that could cause a hostile work environment. These laws also offer benefits for new parents, disabled employees and other protected categories. Here’s a look at some of the employment laws that protect workers in California.

What are the California laws against discrimination?

The state of California prohibits discrimination against employees based on their race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, age, marital status, ancestry, medical history, disability or military status. Employers are also prohibited from discriminating against pregnant women. No business is exempt from discrimination laws, even if they have only a few employees.

California employment law applies to every aspect of running a business. This includes advertising an open position, interviewing applicants and hiring new employees. It also includes training employees, giving them promotions, transferring employees to a new location or terminating their employment. If an employee suspects that they faced discrimination at any point in that process, they could file a lawsuit against their employer.

The state of California also requires businesses with 50 or more employees to provide paid leave to parents who have just had a child. They must also provide paid leave if the employee or an immediate family member suffers from a serious medical condition. Additionally, any business with five or more employees must provide up to four months of paid leave to employees who are pregnant or disabled and can’t work during this time.

What can you do if you’ve faced discrimination?

Workplace discrimination might be illegal, but that doesn’t stop some businesses from committing it. Maybe you suspect that a business declined to hire you or interview you for a position because of your race. Maybe your manager made disrespectful comments about your religion or demoted you shortly after you got pregnant. In any case, you have the right to fight back against discrimination and harassment. You could talk to an attorney about holding your employer accountable for breaking employment law.