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The glass ceiling: an invisible but real workplace barrier

| Sep 21, 2020 | Workplace Discrimination |

Some workers in Michigan and elsewhere – research often points to female employees – feel that something in the workplace is just wrong even when all relevant factors seem unproblematic on the surface.

Those employees look around their office or other work venue and strongly sense that they are being treated in a comparatively disadvantageous way, but they can’t point to anything that overtly confirms that. They feel like they are in a longstanding rut, with their placement in the company being stalled while others less talented move steadily onward and upward.

Their suspicions concerning differentiated treatment are in many instances anything but illusory. In fact, their insights are often squarely on the mark. What they are confronting is the so-called “glass ceiling” that unfairly derails career opportunities and advancement.

That upward-limiting barrier has always existed in American workplaces, with its destructive effects rendering equal opportunity a mockery for legions of talented women. One in-depth legal source on glass ceilings and their discriminatory impact on select workers duly notes that, while the barrier has been a longstanding nemesis, it often plays out with more subtlety nowadays than in the past. Here are some indications that a female employee is being adversely affected by a glass ceiling at work:

  • Exclusion from meetings with broad male participation
  • Transfer of important tasks/duties to male employees
  • Promotion failure despite high work rating
  • Being on the receiving end of belittling actions and comments

Life is of course not routinely fair in any workplace, but some received treatment transcends issues surrounding fairness. If it is discriminatory, it is likely flatly unlawful under a host of both federal and state laws, and susceptible of a remedy and damages marked by maximum compensation.

A proven employment law legal team can provide further information.

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