Gender Discrimination in the Workplace
Gender discrimination, also known as sex discrimination, is a serious issue in the workplace. It refers to any type of unequal treatment based on a person’s gender, whether it is intentional or not. This can take many forms, from unequal pay for equal work, to sexual harassment, to denial of opportunities for promotion or advancement. Massachusetts law prohibits gender discrimination in the workplace and provides a number of protections to employees who believe they have been subjected to such treatment.
Examples of Gender Discrimination Under Massachusetts Law
Gender discrimination can manifest in a variety of ways. Some common examples include:
Unequal pay for equal work: This is one of the most well-known forms of gender discrimination. When a woman is paid less than a man for doing the same job, it is a clear example of discrimination.
Sexual harassment: Sexual harassment is any unwanted and unwelcome behavior of a sexual nature, whether physical, verbal or visual, that creates a hostile work environment. Women are the most common victims of sexual harassment, but men can also be affected.
Denial of opportunities: Women may be unfairly denied opportunities for promotion or advancement, simply because of their gender. This can include being passed over for a promotion in favor of a male colleague, or being excluded from opportunities to develop their skills and advance in their careers.
Pregnancy discrimination: Women who are pregnant or who have recently given birth may also experience discrimination in the workplace. This can include being denied time off for doctor’s appointments or being forced to take a leave of absence when they are not medically required to do so.
Discrimination During Hiring and Promotions
Gender discrimination can also occur during the hiring and promotion process. For example, a woman may be passed over for a job or promotion in favor of a less-qualified male candidate. This can be particularly challenging when the woman has the necessary qualifications and experience to perform the job, but is still passed over because of her gender.
Similarly, a woman may be denied a promotion because of her pregnancy, or because she is perceived as less committed to her job due to her family responsibilities. This type of discrimination is illegal under Massachusetts law and can result in significant penalties for employers.
Protection Under Massachusetts Law
The Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination (MCAD) is responsible for enforcing anti-discrimination laws in the state. If you believe you have been subjected to gender discrimination in the workplace, you can file a complaint with the MCAD. The agency will investigate your claims and, if appropriate, take legal action against the employer.
In addition, Massachusetts law prohibits retaliation against employees who file complaints of discrimination or who participate in investigations into such claims. This means that if you file a complaint of gender discrimination, your employer cannot take adverse action against you, such as demoting you or firing you.
Gender Discrimination Lawyers in Massachusetts
Gender discrimination is a serious issue in the workplace and can take many forms, from unequal pay to sexual harassment. Massachusetts law provides a number of protections to employees who believe they have been subjected to such treatment. If you believe you have been the victim of gender discrimination in the workplace, you should contact Attorney Adam Shafran to learn about your rights and options for seeking justice.