The majority of employees in the State of Alabama are protected from discrimination in the workplace under one of several federal statutes. The Americans with Disabilities Act prohibits employers from discriminating against “qualified” individuals with disabilities with regard to employment decisions. The Age Discrimination in Employment Act, to discriminate against an employee because of their age, specifically employees who are age 40 and older. The Equal Pay Act requires employers to pay men and women equally for performing the same work. Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits employers from discriminating against their employees because of their race, gender, or sex. Most of these statutes also protect against retaliation against employees who complain about these various types of discrimination.
Statistics from the EEOC on Employment Claims in 2017
According to a recent statistical report released by the EEOC, race discrimination employment claims are the most frequently filed claims in the state of Alabama at 46.4 percent. The second most common type of claim is for retaliation, with nearly 44 percent. Sex discrimination claims are the third highest type of claim with a little over 35% of the claims. Finally, disability claims comprise nearly 25% of the EEOC claims filed in the state. With the exception of age discrimination claims (16.4%), all other types of claims each make up less than three percent – national origin (2.7%), religion (2.6%), color (2.4%), equal pay (1.3%).
How has the EEOC Been Handling these Claims?
The EEOC has also released its Performance Report for the fiscal year 2018 and the agency has been making headway in their efforts to address the numerous claims of citizens in our country. The EEOC described its accomplishments in its annual Performance and Accountability Report. The report discusses the agency’s outreach efforts and enforcement efforts to prevent and remedy unlawful discrimination in the workplace.
The EEOC has launched a nationwide online inquiry and appointment system, a component of the EEOC’s Public Portal. This system assisted in more than 40,000 intake interviews and the outreach program was able to reach nearly 400,000 individuals and share with them their rights in the workplace.
Determining Whether Your Employer is Subject to the Federal Laws
The statutes listed above do not necessarily apply to every employer. Whether your employer is subject to the prohibitions of the various federal anti-discrimination laws will depend on several factors, including the type of employer, the number of employees, and the type of discrimination at issue. For example, Title VII applies to private employers who have employed 15 or more employees for at least twenty calendar weeks in the current or preceding calendar year. The ADEA applies to all private employers who have 20 or more employees. On the other hand, if you work for a state or local government, then your employer will be covered by the statute regardless of how many employees it may have.
If you feel you have been the victim of discrimination or retaliation in the workplace, or if you have any other questions regarding your employment rights, please contact the experienced Birmingham employment law attorneys at Michel | King . You can contact us either online or by calling us at (205) 265-1880. We are here to serve you!