Woman on her laptop with gay pride flag in the background

Stopping LGBTQ+ Discrimination in the Workplace

By Douglas Lipsky

Discrimination against the LGBTQ+ community is a persistent issue in workplaces across the U.S., including in New York. If you have experienced discrimination because of your sexual orientation or gender identity, you need an experienced employment lawyer by your side. Let’s take a look at LGTBQ+ discrimination in the workplace and see how you can fight back. 

What is LGBTQ+ discrimination?

The LGBTQ+ community has long faced discrimination, harassment, and unequal treatment which can result in significant physical, emotional, and financial harm. This type of discrimination targets someone because of their sexual orientation or gender identity. 

LGBTQ+ discrimination can take many forms, including:’

  • Harassment
  • Unequal treatment
  • Exclusion
  • Unfair hiring or firing practices

Discrimination based on someone’s sexual orientation or gender identity can occur in various settings, including schools, healthcare facilities, and workplaces.

New York Laws Prohibit LGBTQ+ Discrimination

New York has taken steps to protect LGBTQ+ individuals from employment discrimination. The state’s Human Rights Law prohibits employment discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression. The law applies to all New York employers, regardless of size, and covers discrimination in all aspects of employment, such as hiring, firing, promotions, pay, and benefits.

Also, the New York City Human Rights Law (NYCHRL) offers additional protections for LGBTQ+ individuals in the workplace. The NYCHRL prohibits discrimination based on an individual’s actual or perceived sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression and covers all employers in New York City, regardless of size.

Examples of LGBTQ+ discrimination

LGBTQ+ individuals face various forms of discrimination in the workplace, such as:

  • Unequal treatment – LGBTQ+ employees may receive less favorable treatment than others, such as being denied promotions or assigned to less desirable work assignments.
  • Harassment –  LGBTQ+ individuals may experience harassment like offensive comments, slurs, or jokes, which can create a hostile work environment.
  • Retaliation – Employees who report discriminatory behavior may face retaliation, such as being demoted, denied a promotion, or even fired.
  • Failure to accommodate – Employers may fail to provide reasonable accommodations for LGBTQ+ employees, such as allowing them to use the restroom that corresponds with their gender identity or providing time off for medical treatments related to their gender transition.

How An Employment Lawyer Can Help

If you are a victim of LGBTQ+ discrimination in the workplace, an employment discrimination lawyer can help you understand your legal options and protect your rights. An employment lawyer can help you file a complaint with the appropriate government agency, such as the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) or the New York State Division of Human Rights. They can also represent you in court if necessary and seek compensation for any damages you have suffered, such as lost wages or emotional distress.

In addition to legal representation, an employment discrimination lawyer can also provide guidance and support throughout the entire legal process. They can help you understand the laws that protect you from LGBTQ+ discrimination and help you navigate the complex legal system.

The Takeaway

LGBTQ+ discrimination in New York workplaces is a serious issue that requires attention and action. An employment discrimination lawyer can help you fight for your rights if you are a victim of discrimination. By standing up against discrimination, we can create a more just and equitable workplace for all members of the LGBTQ+ community. Reach out to our dedicated team today.

About the Author
Douglas Lipsky is a co-founding partner of Lipsky Lowe LLP. He has extensive experience in all areas of employment law, including discrimination, sexual harassment, hostile work environment, retaliation, wrongful discharge, breach of contract, unpaid overtime, and unpaid tips. He also represents clients in complex wage and hour claims, including collective actions under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act and class actions under the laws of many different states. If you have questions about this article, contact Douglas today.