For employment purposes, discrimination is when a decision is perceived to be based on the individual’s age, religion, color, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, disability, veteran status, genetic information or pregnancy (see Protected Class). A good boss makes decisions that affect the employee based on business-related needs and skills. As with Harassment discrimination may be a perception; many times bosses do not realize that their words and actions can be interpreted as discrimination.
Discrimination cases can lead to costly legal and public relations battles. A good boss is conscious of what he says and does, and avoids the perception of discrimination in his decision making, especially when hiring, firing or promoting employees.
The links below address many labor regulations including:
- Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII), which prohibits employment discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, or national origin;
- the Equal Pay Act of 1963 (EPA), which protects men and women who perform substantially equal work in the same establishment from sex-based wage discrimination;
- the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA), which protects individuals who are 40 years of age or older;
- Title I and Title V of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, as amended (ADA), which prohibit employment discrimination against qualified individuals with disabilities in the private sector, and in state and local governments;
- Sections 501 and 505 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, which prohibit discrimination against qualified individuals with disabilities who work in the federal government;
- Title II of the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008 (GINA), which prohibits employment discrimination based on genetic information about an applicant, employee, or former employee; and
- the Civil Rights Act of 1991, which, among other things, provides monetary damages in cases of intentional employment discrimination.
- Understanding federal regulations on discrimination (US EEOC).
- An Interviewer’s Guide to Prevent Employment Discrimination (Comp Search).
- How to avoid a workplace discrimination lawsuit (eHow).