Many lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) employees get the feeling in the workplace that their employer or co-workers treat them differently because of their sexual orientation. This can be a very frustrating and upsetting experience and one that you might feel powerless to do anything about.
Despite the many federal and state laws prohibiting employment discrimination, it still occurs at an alarming rate in California and other states. It is difficult in many cases to understand why employment discrimination still happens in this age of tolerance and acceptance. Some victims may even have difficulty determining if they are suffering discrimination or just imagining things.
Discriminating against a worker for any reason has been prohibited for many years. Awareness combined with government oversight has reduced much of this unethical employer behavior, but the problem still exists in all American states.
Employment discrimination remains a serious issue in California. Fortunately, the state government provides help to people who have suffered discrimination in their careers.
Employees in the Golden State can expect some of the best workplace rights protections in the United States and the world. California defines more than a dozen protected classes of people by gender, race, disability and other personal factors that may not suffer discrimination under the state's law. This means that none of these groups may be treated differently in the workplace based on those factors.
California has been ahead of the curve in addressing income inequality. Activists and legislators have worked hard to ensure that people of all races, backgrounds and genders are paid a fair wage for the same work. One of the most challenging barriers to this work is the persisting gender pay gap.
Workplaces are centers of productivity and should be free of any sort of discrimination due to race, gender, sexual orientation and other classifications protected by the state of California. If supervisors and colleagues abuse people in the workplace, the victim has the right to speak out against it.
California is one of the most successful economies in the country and the world, and that is partially due to the strength of innovation in all of its sectors from construction to high-tech development. Discrimination against various groups of employees and managers is the enemy of the diversity that fuels this innovation.
Discrimination of protected classes and other types of employees is bad for business. In a state with such a strong and diversified economy as California, smart employers know to include all possible points of view to maintain a vibrant and innovative workplace.
It may feel to progressive managers and workers that the United States has left the era of workplace discrimination behind. This may seem true especially in California, where high-tech industries represent the cutting edge of industry and innovation.