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California Labor & Employment Law Blog

Workplace sexual harassment can cause emotional damages

A working environment is a place in which all workers should feel safe, supported and protected. However, unfortunately, it is not always this way. Sexual harassment can appear in many forms, from sexually inappropriate jokes to requests for sexual favors in return for career advancement.

Not only are victims of sexual harassment made to feel oppressed and may be vulnerable to retaliation if they resist advances or speak up, but they can also often feel deep shame or embarrassment. Taking action to hold the initiator responsible for their behavior can be the first step toward healing.

Can I make a claim for workplace bullying?

Bullying is most commonly associated with children at school. But unfortunately, people of any age can be affected by bullying. It can occur within social circles, in families or the workplace. Thankfully, there are legal provisions in place that help protect workers who are adversely affected by bullying, particularly when they are bullied because of a protected characteristic.

If you or a loved one's well-being has been affected by workplace bullying, you should know that action can be taken. Bullying can hinder career success, increase chances of mental illness and lead to unnecessary suffering.

Am I improperly classified as a contractor?

Formal employees in the United States who are not exempt from the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) have certain rights regarding their hourly pay and overtime pay. Non-exempt employees have the right to minimum wage, and their wages must increase when they work more than 40 hours per week.

Those who are classified as contractors are exempt from the FLSA laws. Employers often see an advantage to having employees who are exempt from FLSA laws, because they do not have to pay overtime or maintain other wage and hour regulations. This is why many workers fall into the trap of being misclassified. If you believe that you are misclassified as a contractor, it is important to verify this, because you may be entitled to compensation.

Religious employees' rights to reasonable accommodations

The rules and demands of the working environment can have the potential to impact aspects of your personal life. If you are a religious person, you will deem it very important that you follow certain practices, such as dress and prayer, even during working hours. You may be hesitant to speak to your employer about this. Before you do so, you should make yourself aware of your rights.

Every worker in the United States is protected from religious discrimination in the workplace. This means that both theistic and atheistic people have the right to not be treated unfairly based on their beliefs. It also means that when it is reasonable, adjustments can be made at work to accommodate a person's religious beliefs.

Know the signs of unfair workplace harassment

Workplace harassment has no place in a positive work environment. In fact, there are federal and state laws in place to prevent harassment from making people scared to go to work.

Despite the laws and regulations that are in place, many people still struggle with workplace harassment. For example, you might be at work one day and have a superior demean you in front of your coworkers. You could have someone talk down to you every shift as if you're unable to handle the job on your own.

Was I rightfully fired, or was I wrongfully terminated?

If you have recently become unemployed, you are likely to feel shocked and upset by your employer's decision to terminate your job. If your employer did not give you a good reason for why this decision was made, you may start to wonder if there is an underlying reason that is not being admitted.

In certain situations, it can be possible to make a wrongful termination claim against your employer after being fired. However, to do this successfully, you must have a good reason to believe that your employer discriminated against or retaliated against you. The following are things to consider when trying to establish whether you were wrongfully fired.

Your 5 basic rights as a California worker

All workers have certain rights in California. You might be a CEO born and raised in California, or an undocumented agricultural worker who has been in the country for 6 months. But you have the same basic rights, regardless of your legal status.

You must have a good understanding of your rights as a worker. This is so that you can take the appropriate action if your rights are violated, and so that you can take a stand with confidence. The following are the 5 basic rights you have as a worker in California.

Can ogling can be a form of sexual harassment at work?

Sexual behavior, no matter how subtle, should never be a component of people's behavior in the workplace. Staring or ogling may seem to some as a trivial action that is not harming anyone. However, body language such as this can be profoundly pervasive, and can seriously impact the way that an employee feels at work.

If you are feeling uncomfortable at work because your coworkers or managers stare at you in what you would interpret to be of a sexual nature, you should not accept this. Under anti-discrimination and harassment laws, it can be possible for you to take action to protect yourself.

Inappropriate material at work could constitute harassment

Sexual harassment is unfortunately rife in the workplace, despite the legal regulations in place that try to prevent it. As an employee, you should be able to go to work each day without being worried about being made to feel embarrassed, ashamed or uncomfortable, particularly in regard to issues of a sexual nature.

The use of inappropriate or pornographic material has no place in the work environment. If you have been exposed to such content on a regular basis and if this has had a negative effect on your experience at work, you may be able to make a sexual harassment claim.

Understanding national origin discrimination

There are many forms of illegal discrimination that are federally recognized when applied to the employment environment. One of these forms of discrimination is referred to as national origin discrimination. This makes it illegal for employees and job applicants to be treated unfairly because of their national origin.

If you believe that you have been affected by national origin discrimination in the workplace, it is a good idea to start by gaining a solid understanding of the law. After you have done this, consider taking further action to assert your rights.

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