Despite the existence of laws like the Pregnancy Discrimination Act and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, lactating women continue to face discrimination on the job in Texas and across the country. One Delaware woman recently won a $1.5 million jury verdict after she was subjected to harassment and degradation in the workplace while nursing, causing her to stop pumping and eventually lose her milk supply. Despite the success of such cases, however, nursing mothers continue to face major problems on the job.
Anti-discrimination laws have long protected employees over the age of 40 in Texas and across the United States. However, a new decision released by the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals raises questions on whether or not those protections are extended to job applicants as well.
A group of technology employees from companies like Google continue to apply public pressure on employers that force people to sign away their rights to sue or participate in class-action lawsuits as a condition of employment. Many employees in Texas likely work under contracts that force them into arbitration when they have complaints about sexual harassment or discrimination on the job. The workers' rights activists have planned a day-long social media campaign to highlight how arbitration favors employers and promotes harassment and discrimination.
While it is common for male employees in Texas and elsewhere to be subjected to sexual harassment because they are gay or transgender, experts say it is relatively rare for male workers to be sexually harassed by female co-workers or supervisors. However, a male former Disney Cruise Line employee has filed a lawsuit claiming that he experienced sexual and age-based harassment while working at the company.
Female doctors have become commonplace throughout Texas, but a survey of mothers who work as doctors has revealed their struggles with discriminatory attitudes. The results of a survey that investigated workplace challenges among doctors who are mothers found that more than one-third of 6,000 respondents had been discriminated against at work after becoming parents.
Mental illness is a common cause of workplace burnout and absences in Texas. Across the United States, approximately one in five adults are affected by mental illness per year. Employees who are struggling with mental health problems can request a reasonable accommodation from their company's human resources department.
Employers in Texas are prohibited from discriminating against workers on the basis of age by the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, but a survey by the American Association of Retired Persons found that almost 66 percent of respondents had experienced or seen age discrimination in the workplace. In the same survey, 92 percent of respondents said workplace discrimination based on age is somewhat or very common.
Some Texas employees might be well-acquainted with what constitutes overt workplace harassment and discrimination but may not know what to do about more subtle forms. Actions such as looking at a minority employee whenever someone mentions race, staring at a pregnant woman's stomach, or refusing to make eye contact may all feel like they could be discriminatory actions, but it may be difficult to document or report them.
All workers deserve to be treated fairly. Unfortunately, reality sometimes doesn’t reflect this. Workers are sometimes subjected to unjust treatment due to certain personal characteristics. This could include their age.