What does employment discrimination mean and when is an individual entitled to bring a workplace discrimination claim? How does employment discrimination law apply to Education Law?
Generally, under Federal and New York State Laws employment discrimination occurs when a person or a group of persons is treated unequally based on race, gender, age, disability, religion, national origin, marital status, sexual orientation, veteran status, and political affiliation or beliefs, which has a negative affect on that individual. Therefore, job discrimination is prohibited and several Federal Acts have been enacted to support this objective, such as:
- Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII),
- Equal Pay Act of 1963 (EPA),
- Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA),
- Title I and Title V of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA),
- Civil Rights Act of 1991,
- Sections 501 and 505 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and
- Title II of the Genetic Information Non-discrimination Act of 2008 (GINA);
In a recently issued verdict that was tried before the U. S. Eastern District of New York Court in Central Islip, a middle school employee lost a racial discrimination case against Malverne public school officials. A middle school mathematics teacher who was denied a promotion or reassignment initiated the suit. The teacher alleged the District discriminated against him due to his race. At the conclusion of the trial, an eight-member jury examined all the evidence and determined that the teacher had failed to establish the school district and/or its administrators had violated federal laws prohibiting discrimination. In reaching this conclusion, there are several requisite factors which must be considered. In light of these requirements, the federal jury unanimously came to the conclusion that the school’s decision in refusing to promote or reassign the teacher an additional class was not racially motivated and as a result there was no basis to grant the teacher damages.
Where, however, a court finds that a person has been unlawfully discriminated at their workplace, the substantial remedies are available including, but not limited to, hiring, promotion, backpay, reinstatement, front pay, emotional distress damages, and reasonable accommodation.
If you have questions or concerns regarding employment discrimination, or have any questions relating to workplace law, call Gilbert Law Group at 631.630.0100.
Contributed by Sakine Oezcan, Esq.