Almost every form of workplace discrimination is explicitly banned by federal law. One notable exception, according to South Jersey employment discrimination lawyers, is discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered (LGBT) individuals. Although in July, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) ruled that the prohibition of discrimination on the basis of sex as set forth in the Civil Rights Act of 1964 applies equally to sexual orientation, the statute itself remains silent with regard to the LGBT community.
As a result, LGBT workers are often at the mercy of their individual states when it comes to seeking recourse for workplace discrimination. A lack of consensus amongst those states means that some LGBT workers are at a decided disadvantage. In 28 states – including Florida, Virginia and Ohio – there is no explicit workplace protection for LGBT employees. New York currently prohibits workplace discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, but not gender identity.
Fortunately, New Jersey is one of 17 states, along with the District of Columbia, which has passed laws that bar employers from discriminating against current or prospective employees on the basis of their sexual orientation or gender identity. The relevant statute – the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination (LAD) – offers broad protection. Not only are employers unable to discriminate against an openly LGBT employee, they are similarly forbidden from discriminating against an employee based upon a suspicion that the employee could be LGBT. When an employee believes they have been discriminated against by a New Jersey employer because of their sexual orientation or gender identity, they may pursue legal action and recover damages and attorney’s fees.
South Jersey Employment Discrimination Lawyers at Sidney L. Gold & Associates Represent LGBT Discrimination Victims
LGBT employees in New Jersey have a right to make a living, just like any other employee. Although the EEOC maintains that the Civil Rights Act applies to discrimination based upon sexual orientation, the underlying agency decision does not address gender identity. Moreover, the absence of any language in the Civil Rights Act with regard to sexual orientation and gender identity means that New Jersey LGBT employees are largely dependent upon the LAD. If you or a loved one have been unfairly discriminated against based upon their sexual orientation or gender identity, South Jersey employment discrimination lawyers at Sidney L. Gold & Associates can help. Call 215-569-1999 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation in our Philadelphia office, where we serve clients throughout Southeast Pennsylvania, New Jersey and New York.