|Updated: 4/11/2007 10:26 am
||Published: 4/11/2007 10:26 am
Federal and state anti-discrimination laws clearly mandate that all employment decisions and practices can't be based on discriminatory criteria such as race, color, national origin, religion, gender, age, or disability. This means employers can't choose not to hire, promote, discipline, or fire you for reasons that aren't strictly job-related. They also can't retaliate against you if you choose to exercise your rights under anti-discrimination laws. It's important to note that included in most anti-discrimination laws is your right to work in an environment free from sexual harassment, racial slurs, and other hurtful or disparaging conduct. Thus, part of an employer's responsibility in implementing non-discriminatory employment practices is to do the best to protect you from discrimination at the hands of other employees in the workplace. If you believe you've been unfairly discriminated against by your employer, labor union, or employment agency when applying for a job or while on the job or believe that you've been discriminated against for exercising your rights under anti-discrimination laws, you may file a charge with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Remember that there are strict time frames in which charges of employment discrimination must be filed. To guarantee the ability of the commission to act on your behalf, you'll need to adhere to their deadlines.