A study released in March drew on the experiences of 500 people who had faced workplace discrimination related to factors such as their age, gender, religion, race, sexual orientation, pregnancy or marital status. In some cases, the discrimination was subtle. The researchers identified a number of different ways that discrimination might manifest in workplaces in New York and throughout the country.
On April 5, the New York City Council voted 47-3 to ban New York City employers from asking about the salary history of prospective employees. This was done primarily in an effort to close the wage gap between male and female workers. The bill prohibits both public and private sector employers to use prior salary information to make a new salary offer.
Many older workers in New York hope to stay active in their jobs past the usual retirement age. However, research from an economics professor at the University of California, Irvine, says that it may be difficult for many of them to find work. Along with two other economists, the study sent 40,000 resumes applying for actual job openings. The resumes were all identical except for the ages of the hypothetical applicants.
According to a speaker at the Society for Human Resource Management's Employment Law and Legislative Conference, workers in New York and the rest of the United States should be diligent when speaking about religious discrimination in the workplace. This advice comes in the wake of religious community centers being threatened and as travel and immigration efforts from certain countries are being restricted on the basis of religion.
New York women who become pregnant may want to continue working for most of their pregnancy. While a pregnant woman may be able to perform many of her usual job tasks, she may also need some workplace accommodations. Employers are legally obligated to provide pregnant workers with reasonable accommodations and protect pregnant workers from discrimination.
According to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, retaliation claims are commonly filed against New York employers and others nationwide. In fiscal year 2016, there were 42,018 retaliation claims, which translated to 45.9 percent of all claims made during that period. Other claims that made the top 10 list for 2016 include those made based on sex, age or national origin.
New York residents may be aware of former President Barack Obama's progressive policies toward the LGBTQ community. In July 2014, he signed Executive Order 13672, which forbid federal contractors from discrimination based on gender identity and sexual orientation. However, the election of Donald Trump has called into question whether or not that order would be overturned. The White House press secretary said that he wasn't sure if Trump would undo the order when asked by a reporter.
Older workers who are a part of the workforce in New York may want to know about a recent ruling from the Third Circuit Court of Appeals. The decision has set a precedent and may make it easier for certain groups of older workers to submit lawsuits under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, or ADEA, using the disparate impact theory of liability. In addition, the decision runs counter to the rulings issued by the Second, Sixth and Eighth circuit courts and adds an element of uncertainty for national employers.
Some workers in New York might be aware of employment discrimination on grounds such as race, sex and nationality. However, they might not realize they could be discriminated against in other ways as well. For example, a part-time employee might be regarded by full-time employees as being less dedicated.
Protection has increased for foreign national workers who are employed in New York. The U.S. Department of Justice's Civil Rights Division made changes to the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) found at 8 U.S.C. 1324(b). Although this act provides protection for international workers and employers, workers were still vulnerable to being overly scrutinized. The identification screening process involves providing proof of authorized I-9s and E-verification.