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Workplace Discrimination Is Illegal and Should Be Investigated

In Illinois, it is illegal to discriminate in the workplace. If you have been a victim of discrimination, call an experienced Chicago employment lawyer.

In the state of Illinois, it is illegal to discriminate against anyone because of:

  • Their race
  • Color
  • Religion
  • Age 40 or over
  • Military service
  • Sexual orientation
  • Sex
  • National origin
  • Citizenship status
  • Physical handicap
  • Mental handicap
  • Ancestry
  • Unfavorable military discharge

If you work in Illinois, you are protected from anyone discriminating against you, for any reason, and for all of the conditions of your employment. That would include, but may not be limited to:

  • Transfer
  • Pay
  • Tenure
  • Selection
  • Harassment
  • Promotion
  • Demotion
  • Performance assessment
  • Employment conditions
  • Seniority
  • Union representation
  • Hiring
  • Firing
  • Layoffs

Not sure how to figure out if there is discrimination in your workplace? Take a look around you and watch how people are treated. You can often figure out if someone is being discriminated against by how they are treated. For example, sexual discrimination often takes place in the form of unwelcome and unwanted sexual advances, asking for sexual favors, or if a superior suggests a person’s position at a company is dependent upon the person having sex with the supervisor/manager. That kind of conduct violates anti-discrimination laws if it gets in the way of job performance or creates a hostile, offensive or intimidating work environment.

There are other forms of discrimination, and one of them relates to an employer not providing a reasonable accommodation for a worker. This can include if someone needs a special monitor to do their job or a certain kind of desk with more space to perform their tasks. Interestingly, this reasonable accommodation provision is also applicable to a person’s religion. This is not to say that a company has to hire those not otherwise qualified for a job, but that they need to make reasonable accommodations whenever it would not cause undue hardship for the employer.

If you are an employer and not clear on what you need to do in the workplace with regard to discrimination, make it a point to contact an experienced Chicago employment lawyer. It is vital you get the right kind of information about discrimination and how to avoid running afoul of the law. Your Chicago employment lawyer has many years in the trenches handling cases dealing with discrimination. You could not ask for better legal counsel.

Timothy Coffey is a <a href=”http://www.employmentlawcounsel.com”>Chicago employment lawyer</a> and principal attorney for The Coffey Law Office, P. C., an employment litigation firm dedicated to representing employees in the workplace. To learn more or to contact a <a href=”http://www.employmentlawcounsel.com”>Chicago employment attorney</a>, visit Employmentlawcounsel.com.

This entry was posted on Wednesday, December 28th, 2011 at 7:39 pm and is filed under Discrimination
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Illinois Employers Are Liable For Supervisor Conduct Toward Workers

When it comes to sexual harassment, Illinois employers are deemed responsible for a supervisor’s actions towards an employee.

The Illinois Supreme Court has ruled that an employer is responsible for sexual harassment of an employee by a supervisor, even if that worker is not under his or her direct command. Or to put it another way, if a manager/supervisor makes advances toward any worker, not just one who works directly for them, it is still considered to be sexual harassment.

This is an important ruling and means that Illinois company owners must train their staff, including managers, on how to prevent sexual harassment in their workplace and how to avoid a hostile work environment as a result of the harassment. This ruling was handed down in Sangamon County Sheriff’s Department v. Illinois Human Rights Commission; a ruling that stated the employer is strictly liable for any manager’s or supervisor’s actions.

Part of this significant case involved a close look at the federal law in Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which indicates that a person is not a supervisor unless they have direct authority over a victim’s employment status. The Illinois Human Rights Act does have this restriction, and their stated position is that employers are liable for the actions and conduct of every supervisor towards all employees in the company.

In Sangamon, a female records clerk filed a sexual harassment and retaliation complaint against the sheriff’s department. She stated a sergeant in the department, not her direct supervisor, was harassing her. In this case, the initial lawsuit was filed against the supervisor and the sheriff’s department.

The accused male harasser opted to settle out of court, thus dismissing him from the case, and leaving the department on the hook. The courts found the employer strictly liable for the man’s behavior even though she did not work directly under his authority. This ruling is important, as it, in effect, stretches out or expands the meaning of strict liability under Illinois law.

It should be mentioned that strict liability in this case means that the sheriff’s department was liable for the sexual harassment even if they did not know about it, and this applies whether the harassment was a hostile work environment or unwanted and unwelcome sexual come-ons. The court awarded the victim $23,000; $13,000 in court fees and $10,000 in damages.

Every case in this area of the law is different, and for this reason, if you have been in a similar situation in your workplace, call an experienced Chicago employment lawyer for advice and legal counsel. If you want to know what your rights are in situations like this one, or similar scenarios, the call you make to a Chicago employment lawyer will give you enough information to decide what you would like to do with your potential case.

Timothy Coffey is a <a href=”http://www.employmentlawcounsel.com”>Chicago employment lawyer</a> and principal attorney for The Coffey Law Office, P. C., an employment litigation firm dedicated to representing employees in the workplace. To learn more or to contact a <a href=”http://www.employmentlawcounsel.com”>Chicago employment attorney</a>, visit Employmentlawcounsel.com.

This entry was posted on Wednesday, December 14th, 2011 at 3:15 am and is filed under Employment Law
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