How a Small Business Can Handle Issues of Discrimination

As a small business owner, you will want to be sure that you have taken steps to ensure that you are not susceptible to complaints of discrimination. If you do obtain a complaint from a potential employee, it’s important that you take the necessary steps in response. Failing to do so could cause serious problems in the long run that could ultimately cost you time and money. Working with a business lawyer Danbury, CT trusts is vital when faced with a complaint of discrimination. With their assistance, you may be able to mitigate the problem or concern that you are facing.

What is Employment Discrimination?

Situations of discrimination can occur in a number of ways. Although there are certainly obvious situations of discrimination and harassment, there can also be a number of circumstances that are fairly difficult to ascertain. An employee can be faced with discrimination for a number of reasons, for example:

  • A qualified candidate being passed over for a promotion because of the color of their skin, age or sex.
  • Not providing equal pay to employees holding the same job as other staff who make more.
  • Not offering promotions to staff that are eligible due to their ethnicity, age or sex.
  • Not providing staff with leave when they require, including:
  • Disability
  • Maternity
  • Retirement

Discrimination can take on many forms. Ensuring that this does not occur in the workplace is key. It is your responsibility as a business owner to provide both you and your employees with the proper training and guidance to save yourself from possible legal complications in the future.

Handling Discrimination Complaints

When an employee comes forward with a report of situations involving discrimination or harassment, you will want to make sure that you respond in an appropriate way. Your compassionate response can go a long way. By failing to listen and take action, you may quickly find yourself in a problematic situation. The last thing you want to do is make the situation worse than it has to be. The following are tips for managing complaints of discrimination:

  • Listen to what your employee has to say. By actively listening to your staff, you can help ensure that the problem does not become worse than it needs to be. It’s also important to note that it’s possible that you may not be aware of the discrimination that could be occurring.
  • Do not question whether the person’s complaint is true or not. By doing so, you can become part of the problem.
  • Respond appropriately by investigating the accusations.
  • Take action against the staff that treated the accuser unfairly

In some situations, accusations can be of a rather serious nature. If this is the case, it may make sense to hire a third party to look into the issue. Although nerve-wracking, in the long run this can ensure that you have taken steps to respond to the complaints in the most appropriate manner.

Your response to someone’s complaints are perhaps, the most vital when faced with such a situation. By listening to your employee and responding appropriately, you may be able to prevent the possible legal issues you could be faced with if they were to file a formal complaint.

If you find that you are experiencing complaints of discrimination, you may want to ensure that you have the proper policies in place to secure that you are compliant with employment discrimination laws. A business law attorney will be able to support and advise you in managing any discriminatory issues that may arise.


Thank you to our friends and contributors at Sweeney Legal for their insight into business law.

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