When Congress passed the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) in 1990, individuals with various health and ability challenges throughout the United States achieved a major victory. The ADA requires employers to offer reasonable accommodations so that individuals with disabilities could perform their job duties and work for them.
The vast majority of companies offer some form of sexual harassment training. According to the Association for Talent Development, approximately 71 percent of employers have implemented a form of sexual harassment prevention training that they require all employees to complete. An even higher percentage of employers have created a written policy on sexual harassment that defines the behavior and provides guidelines for victims who need to report such abuses to make them stop.
Old age is a fact of life. At some point in our evolution, we simply look, feel and even act like we're getting older. The thing is, just because we're getting older and have a few more gray hairs is not a valid reason for employers to discriminate against us on the job. Age discrimination is unlawful and the employers who discriminate against the aging members of their workforce unfairly can be held accountable in court.
Michigan law is very specific about protecting its citizens from workplace discrimination. The law makes it clear that it is illegal to discriminate against any person on the "basis of age, arrest record, color, height, marital status, national origin, physical or mental disability (including AIDS and HIV), race, religion, sex and weight." No company, no matter how big or small, is exempt from the discrimination laws.
A former transgender funeral director recently won a favorable decision against Michigan-based R.G & G.R. Harris Funeral Homes for discrimination. The former funeral director was transitioning from a male to a female when she was fired from Harris Funeral Homes in 2013 after disclosing her secret.
Gender discrimination is illegal, but it still happens in workplaces all across the country. Men and women do not always get the same opportunities, based solely on their gender.
Pregnant women all across the country are still finding discrimination in the workplace a problem when it comes to motherhood. Approximately 31,000 charges were filed for discrimination against pregnant women in the U.S. from 2010 to 2015. That averages around 6,000 per year.
Employee discrimination charges can be filed with the Michigan Department of Civil Rights or with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). Discrimination, under Michigan's Elliott-Larson Civil Rights Act, is asserted any time an employer uses race, color, national origin, age, sex, weight, height, marital status, religious beliefs or the arrest record of an individual to preclude them from employment or to harass or treat them unfairly in the workplace.
A lawsuit filed against the Michigan Department of Corrections for discrimination against female correctional officers has been ongoing since June 2016. At least that is when the initial complaint was filed.
Michigan employment discrimination laws are written to protect one's rights in the workplace. Discrimination is the act of treating an individual or group of people different or unfairly based upon membership in a protected class of people, such as race, sex, age or religion.