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Discrimination and Harassment

Discrimination against, and harassment of, persons in employment based on a number of protected categories is unlawful under both California and federal law.

Examples of protected categories as regards California employment discrimination and anti-harassment laws include race, religious creed, color, national origin, ancestry, physical disability, mental disability, medical condition, marital status, sex, age (over 40), or sexual orientation. Retaliation against employees for making legitimate complaints of discrimination and harassment is also unlawful.

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The word “harassment” here means something more specific than annoying behavior from a co-worker, supervisor or customer. It refers to a form of employment discrimination.

For example, sexual harassment means unwelcome verbal, visual, or physical conduct of a sexual nature. To constitute unlawful harassment the conduct must be either severe or pervasive, or both, and also affect working conditions or create a hostile work environment.

There are similar definitions of harassment for each of the various protected categories listed above. So, while sexual and racial/national origin harassment may get the most attention in the public eye, persons who have experienced harassment based on other protected categories, such as disability, religion, etc. have rights that are recognized under anti-discrimination laws.

The Sohnen Law Firm handles discrimination and harassment cases which range from an in-office consultation to representation in a civil lawsuit in a California or federal court. We have represented both women and men who have been sexually harassed at work, workers over age 40 who have been victims of age discrimination, and many other discrimination and harassment cases.