What is Employment Discrimination? - Barrett & Farahany

Helping employees find justice in eleven states with offices in Illinois, Georgia, and Alabama.

What is Employment Discrimination?

What is Employment Discrimination?

It is illegal to discriminate based on a protected characteristic at any level of employment. Illegal workplace discrimination actually encompasses all aspects of employment from hiring to active employment to firing. Employment discrimination occurs when a job applicant, employee or terminated employee is treated unfairly because of their race, national origin, gender, disability, age, or religion.

Employment Discrimination is Prohibited by Federal Law:

Executive Order 11246 is enforced by the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) and requires that Federal contractors and subcontractors take affirmative action to ensure they are an equal employment opportunity employer.

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits discrimination during hiring, termination, promotion, referral, or employment due to race, religion, color, sex, or national origin. This is enforced by the EEOC, or Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

Types of Discrimination:

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Race
  • Ethnicity
  • National Origin
  • Skin Color
  • Disability
  • Pregnancy/Parenthood
  • Religion

Illegal discrimination in the workplace occurs when an employee is adversely treated because of a protected characteristic. Illegal discrimination can occur because of something evident in the workplace, something that is limited to the employee’s private life, or even something that is specific to another person the employee is known to have a relationship with.

Employees who experience illegal discrimination in the workplace should file a complaint. United States law makes it illegal for companies to subject employees to unfair treatment/blatant discrimination based on the above-mentioned protected characteristics. It is also illegal for employers to retaliate against anyone who files a complaint alleging illegal discrimination or who participates in the investigation of a complaint of illegal discrimination in the workplace.

For more information on how to protect yourself against illegal discrimination in the workplace or what to do when your employer retaliates against you for filing a protected discrimination complaint, please get in touch with the experienced Atlanta employment law attorneys at Barrett & Farahany.


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Barrett & Farahany

Georgia Office

3344 Peachtree Road NE, Suite 800
Atlanta, GA 30326

Alabama Office

2 20th St N, Suite 900,
Birmingham, AL 35203

Illinois Office

77 W. Wacker Dr. Suite 4500
Chicago, IL 60601


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