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Toledo Discrimination Lawyer

Discrimination occurs when employees are treated differently or unlawfully, based on a protected class. Examples of discrimination include (but are not limited to):

 

  • Depriving employees of advancement opportunities or training
  • Not compensating employees fairly or equally
  • Refusing to hire or discharge someone
  • Harassing employees
  • Terminating and retaliating against employees based on a protected class
  • Having a hostile work environment

 

The following laws prohibit workplace discrimination:

 

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII)

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits discrimination based on the following protected classes:

 

  • Race
  • Color
  • Religion
  • Sex and Gender
  • National Origin

 

Title VII also protects employees from harassment, which can include offensive remarks referring to a specific trait of the above protected classes. 

 

Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)

The ADA protects disabled employees from discrimination. The ADA defines disability as:

 

  • Having a physical or mental impairment that limits one or more major life function;
  • Having a record of impairments; or
  • Being perceived as having an impairment.

 

Under the ADA, disabled employees can request reasonable accommodations, either verbally in writing, to their employer. Once the employer is aware of the disability and receives the request, it is up to the employer to determine the best way to accommodate their disabled employee’s needs without placing undue hardship on the employer.

 

Examples of reasonable accommodations include:

 

  • Modifications to the work environment, schedules, or workplace policies
  • Restructuring jobs
  • Disability leave
  • Reassignment to a vacant position in which the employee is capable of performing the essential functions when they are unable to perform the functions of their original position

 

Refusal to allow reasonable accommodations when they are available, termination, or adverse employment actions due to having a disability can be a violation of the ADA.

 

Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA)

FMLA is a federal law that requires covered employers to provide up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave to eligible employees for the following:

 

  • The birth of a child and care for the newborn within 1 year of birth
  • Adopting or fostering a child within the first year
  • Having a serious health or medical condition that makes an employee unable to perform their job’s essential functions
  • Caring for a spouse, parent, or child with a serious medical condition
  • Having a qualifying exigency due to their spouse, child, or parent being a covered military member (in the case of military caretaking leave, employees can have 26 weeks of leave during a single 12-month period instead of 12 weeks of leave)

 

Any adverse employment action or termination due to an employee taking FMLA leave can be a form of discrimination.

 

Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978 (PDA)

The PDA is an amendment of Title VII that bolsters sex-based protections surrounding pregnancy, childbirth, and related medical conditions.

 

Under the PDA, pregnant employees cannot be forced to remain on leave or be barred from returning to work after a set amount of time after childbirth. They must be allowed to work as long as they can perform their job’s essential duties. In the event that a pregnant employee cannot perform those duties, employers must treat the employee just as they would any other temporarily disabled employee. This means if an employer providers benefits to employees to its workers on medical or temporary disability leave, pregnant employees must receive the same benefits.

 

Failure to provide these accommodations or forcing pregnant employees out of the workplace is a PDA violation and discrimination.

 

Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA)

ADEA protects employees who are at least 40 years old from being treated unfairly compared to younger employees in all aspects of their job. Toledo employers must have 4 or more employees to be subject to Ohio’s Civil Rights Act (under the federal law alone, employers with at least 20 employees are subject to ADEA).

 

The burden of proof for age discrimination present a higher burden for employees, as they must prove that age was the motivating factor for discrimination and not just a factor.

 

Contact a Toledo Discrimination Lawyer

If you believe you have experienced discrimination at your workplace, contact a Toledo discrimination lawyer. You can reach Bryant Legal, LLC’s Toledo office by calling 419-824-4439, emailing Matthew Bryant at mbryant@bryantlegalllc.com, or filling out our contact form.