Many employers have invested significant time and effort to help workers with disabilities succeed in the workplace. For some workers, the increased prioritization of remote work options has dramatically improved their work environment; for others, telecommuting has created additional burdens. As the landscape of the modern workplace shifts, new issues arise around disability discrimination in the workplace.
As educational and social gatherings occur more and more frequently online, cyber bullying, online harassment, and other forms of virtual abuse have also become more common. Chat rooms, video calls, and social media platforms are all potential venues for online bullying. Both children and adults can experience cyber harassment, bullying, stalking, and other unwanted and unwelcome interactions. This kind of online abuse can occur in the workplace, in online educational settings, or in online social groups or networks. Although it can be difficult to hold perpetrators accountable for harassing behaviors, New Jersey’s laws are some of the most protective in the country. An experienced attorney can help you put an end to cyber bullying, cyber harassment, or other kinds of abuse that you or your child may be experiencing.
Sex or gender discrimination is the different treatment of individuals in their employment because of their biological sex, gender identity, or gender expression. If you have been rejected for employment, fired, or otherwise experienced different treatment in the workplace because of your sex or gender, you may have suffered from this kind of discrimination. Although sex-based discrimination is illegal under numerous federal and state laws, there are circumstances in which it may be permissible under a legal exception or where discriminatory conduct may not meet the legal requirements to prevail in court.
Discrimination against pregnant employees is illegal under federal laws, including the Pregnancy Discrimination Act (PDA) and the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA). In New Jersey, pregnant workers have additional protections before, during, and after pregnancy, including those in the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination (NJLAD).
In recent years, New Jersey has taken the lead in working to reduce discrimination, especially in the workplace. Recent legislation has gone above and beyond the basic protections of the New Jersey law against discrimination (NJLAD), proving protections that encourage diversity and seek to reduce more subtle expressions of race discrimination in workplaces.
For pregnant women in the workplace, discrimination can take the form of being fired, demoted, or never hired in the first place. Many times, however, it can also take more subtle forms. Here are a few less obvious ways pregnancy discrimination can affect workers.
It’s illegal for an employer to discriminate against any current or potential employee because of a disability. This means that an employer can’t choose not to hire, to fire, or take other adverse employment action against a person because of their disability if they are otherwise able to perform the essential functions of the job “with or without accommodation.” But what does “accommodation” mean? What does an employer have to do for a current or potential employee with a disability?
When an employee brings credible, substantiated accusations of sexual harassment or discrimination in a workplace, their employer often settles discreetly for “an undisclosed sum of money” and an agreement to keep everything confidential. A law passed earlier this year in New Jersey declares that such confidentiality and non-disclosure agreements are against the greater interest of the public and, as such, unenforceable. Not only does the new law restrict settlement agreements, it significantly restricts the rights of employers to require that employees broadly waive rights related to pursuing discrimination, retaliation, or harassment claims that may arise during their employment.
Private employers balance respecting the rights and diversity of their workers with fostering the moral principles that they support as a company. Unlike public employers, private companies are free to enact religious displays, advocate for one religion over another, and openly engage in religious practices in the workplace. However, both Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination (NJLAD) protect New Jersey workers from employment discrimination based on their religion or lack thereof. These laws prohibit employers from discriminating against employees based on religion, both in hiring and during their employment, and make it illegal to force those of faith to suppress or violate their religious beliefs as a condition of obtaining or maintaining employment.