Federal and state laws protect against various different types of discrimination. For example, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits employers from discrimination against employees on the basis of religion, gender, sex, national origin or race. Additionally, the Americans with Disability Act (ADA) and the American with Disabilities Amendments Act (ADAAA) prohibit discrimination on the basis of age (i.e. employers who employ more than 20 people may not take negative actions against workers over aged 40 including firing, failing to hire or promote, or retaliating for complaining about discrimination.)
Other laws provide additional protections such as the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) which allows eligible employees to take up to 12 weeks unpaid leave under certain circumstances and the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA), which provides that most military personnel must be returned to their jobs when returning from serving in the military, and also prohibits discrimination based on an employee’s military service.
Movements are also underway to prohibit discrimination based on credit scores. However, one segment of the population – ex-cons – are not protected from discrimination when they enter the work force, although significant policy considerations favor establishing some protections to cover formerly incarcerated individuals after they have served their time. In fact, a new petition is asking Obama to issue an executive order that prohibits federal agencies and government contractors from screening out people with criminal records in the early stages of the hiring process.
According to statistics, ex-convicts are 50 percent less likely to find employment than other job seekers, the activists say, which makes them more likely to fall back into a life of crime. For more information or if you or a loved one has faced any type of employment discrimination, please contact the experienced Atlanta employment discrimination lawyers at Buckley Beal LLP for an immediate case evaluation.