The definition of sex discrimination has become a significant legal issue in California courts and those across the country. Many federal appeals courts have upheld an understanding of sex discrimination that also prohibits discriminating against LGBT workers on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. However, the Trump administration’s Justice Department and other legal authorities disagree, and the Supreme Court is hearing several cases on the matter. However, traditional sex discrimination cases continue to reflect major problems experienced by women workers across the country.
High-profile sexual harassment cases in entertainment, politics and technology have drawn some attention to the hardships that women continue to face on the job despite decades of civil rights legislation and many significant cases upholding women’s rights at work. However, women may face a wide range of issues that are not limited to unwanted sexual advances at work. Many of these claims never even reach a formal complaint, let alone go to court. Workers who are not represented often fear that they will be subject to retaliation if they complain, and their fears are far from unfounded. Those workers who do pursue claims need to confront changes to the legal process in the past 10 years that put more obstacles in front of employees fighting workplace discrimination.
Women continue to face pay inequity, a situation highlighted by the victorious U.S. Women’s World Cup team. While professional soccer may seem far away from a factory, office or restaurant, the issue of pay disparity remains a major concern for women workers.
Women may face difficulty in hiring and promotion and may be more likely to be terminated, all on the basis of discriminatory stereotypes. An employment law attorney may be able to help workers fight back against employment discrimination on the basis of race, sex, disability or other factors.