In today’s workplaces, it is hard for people to believe employees can still be discriminated against because of their race. However, despite the many advances made by minorities over the past few decades, racial discrimination is still quite prevalent in many companies. While in some instances it will be very obvious, the vast majority of problems regarding racial discrimination are carefully hidden by employers in various ways. As a result, many employees fail to file complaints about these incidents, even if they suspect race played a factor. For those who find themselves to be victims of racial discrimination in the workplace, there are numerous options that can be used to combat the prejudice employers are using against them to prevent them from gaining pay raises and promotions. To learn more about this, here are some of the most important facts about racial discrimination.
Prohibited by State and Federal Law :
In any type of work setting, racial discrimination is prohibited by state and federal law. However, due to it being hard to detect in many situations, it is one form of discrimination that is difficult to prosecute. To do so, it usually takes not only an employee who is willing to fight hard for their legal rights but also one who hires a racial discrimination lawyer who is experienced and knowledgeable in handling such cases.
Identifying Racial Discrimination :
When alleging racial discrimination has taken place within a company and thus violated Title VII of the United States Civil Rights Act of 1964, it will be important to have as much evidence as possible to support those claims. For example, if an employee receives derogatory emails or text messages, these should always be saved. In addition, if there are offensive cartoons posted on bulletin boards or left on an employee’s desk, these should be kept as well. Finally, if others were nearby and heard or witnessed the alleged acts of racial discrimination, it is vital the employee be able to obtain statements from these witnesses. If this occurs, the statements should be as specific as possible, and should always include the date, time, and location where the acts took place. Once all evidence is gathered together, it should immediately be given to a racial discrimination attorney. By doing so, the attorney can examine the evidence to determine if it meets the criteria for racial discrimination, and thus can discuss various options for the employee.
Examples of Workplace Racial Discrimination :
Along with the obvious signs such as offensive emails or cartoons, there are many examples of racial discrimination that occur during the hiring process and afterwards. For example, if an applicant of another race is hired for a job despite having far fewer qualifications, it is possible racial discrimination took place. In other instances, minority candidates for promotions may be continually passed over in favor of lesser-qualified candidates of other races, indicating racial discrimination may be occurring. When these situations happen, it will be imperative to discuss the situation with an attorney who specializes in racial discrimination law. By doing so, the attorney can ask questions about the incident and provide an objective analysis of whether or not the employee has a valid concern.
Fighting Racial Discrimination :
Should it be determined an employee has a valid concern involving racial discrimination, attorneys at West Coast Employment Lawyers will look at a variety of factors when planning legal strategy. One of the most common is examining the company’s hiring records to determine if a clear pattern of racial discrimination can be established. In many cases, once records are examined, a pattern begins to emerge involving certain managers failing to hire minorities for various positions or failing to promote well-qualified minority candidates. If this evidence can be gathered by a racial discrimination lawyer, an employee’s discrimination case becomes much stronger.
Contacting the EEOC:
While most employees assume they should file a lawsuit immediately upon believing racial discrimination took place against them, that is not the best course of action. Instead, upon speaking with a knowledgeable racial discrimination attorney, the employee is usually required to file a formal complaint with the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission prior to beginning any discrimination lawsuit against an employer. Once a complaint is filed, the EEOC will contact the employee to discuss the details of their situation and offer an opinion as to whether the agency feels the complaint is valid. However, regardless of whether or not the EEOC deems the complaint to be valid, the employee does have the right to pursue a racial discrimination lawsuit if they so desire.
In the event the EEOC does feel racial discrimination did occur, the agency will launch an investigation into the matter. Along with interviewing the employee, employer, and witnesses, agency investigators will also examine numerous records involving hiring and promotion of employees spanning years or decades. Along with this, investigators will also look closely at emails, text messages, and other evidence given them by the employee that may demonstrate racial discrimination. In any event, once an investigation is launched it will be lengthy, sometimes lasting as long as 12 months before being completed. Thus, an employee will have to be patient during the process, and also work closely with their attorney from West Coast Employment Lawyers to take the proper steps while the investigation plays out.
When an employee files an EEOC complaint or a racial discrimination lawsuit against their employer, they should always be prepared for possible retaliation. This can occur in many forms, including demotions, pay decreases, suspensions, negative performance evaluations, and even threats of being fired or of physical violence. Due to the seriousness of these situations, it will be important to maintain the services of a well-qualified attorney who specializes in racial discrimination law. By doing so, this will allow the employee’s legal rights to be protected from start to finish, and also put an employer on notice that the employee does have legal representation who is ready to fight hard for their rights.
EEOC and Lawsuit Results :
Should the EEOC investigation and subsequent lawsuit be in favor of the employee who was discriminated against due to race, a variety of results can happen. Along with being awarded financial compensation by a court, the employee can also usually expect to be given the job or promotion for which they were denied. In addition, the employer may face disciplinary actions that can include significant fines and possibly firings of those who were involved in the discriminatory practices. These penalties, combined with the negative publicity that almost always accompanies these situations, often act as a strong deterrent to future discriminatory practices by the employer as well as other employers.
Fight for Your Rights:
When an employee is the victim of racial discrimination, it can be humiliating and very depressing. As a result, many often choose to take no action at all or simply leave the company in search of new employment. However, if you are a well-qualified employee who knows you deserved the promotion or job, choose instead to fight for your rights. To make sure your employer is held accountable for acts of racial discrimination, schedule a consultation with West Coast Employment Lawyers.