Connecticut Employment Discrimination Lawyers
Employment discrimination is the unjust, unfair, or prejudicial treatment of different categories of people based on their membership in certain protected classes. Discrimination means treating an employee or an applicant for employment worse because they are part of that protected class.
The protected classes or categories are set by federal and Connecticut law. They include discrimination on the basis of:
- race and national origin;
- physical or mental disability;
- sexual orientation;
- and gender identity.
The law also prohibits retaliation for opposing or complaining about discrimination against a member of one of these protected classes or for supporting a claim of discrimination by a member of one of these protected classes.
What Are Some Acts That Constitute Discrimination or Retaliation?
Employers can engage in discrimination or retaliation in a wide variety of ways. Some of the most common forms of discrimination or retaliation include:
- Being terminated or laid off from your job;
- Not being selected for promotion;
- Receiving unfavorable job assignments;
- Not being paid the same as your coworkers;
- Not receiving the same benefits as your coworkers;
- Not being hired for a job; and
- Different treatment in one or more terms or conditions of employment.
These employment actions are discriminatory if they are taken based on your membership in a protected class. They are retaliatory if the employer considers your prior complaint of discrimination or your support for someone else’s complaint in deciding to take these actions.
I Have Been Subjected to Discrimination or Retaliation. What Should I Do?
If you have been subjected to one of these unlawful acts at your workplace based on your membership in a protected class, what should you do next?
The first step is to talk with an experienced Connecticut employment lawyer, such as the discrimination and retaliation attorneys at Garrison, Levin-Epstein, Fitzgerald & Pirrotti. We may be able to resolve your employment dispute without the need for any adversarial filings.
Sometimes, though, a resolution is not possible or in your best interest. In that case, you have the right to file a complaint of discrimination or retaliation in either an administrative forum or in court, depending on the situation.
Administrative claims can be filed with two different agencies. Alleged violations of Connecticut law are filed with the Connecticut Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities (or CHRO). Alleged violations of federal law are filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (or EEOC). It often makes sense to file with both agencies, although that is something you should discuss with your lawyer.
In many situations, you only have 300 days from the date of the last discriminatory or retaliatory act to file your claims with the CHRO or EEOC. Claims that are not filed within that limitations period may be forever barred. So do not wait until it is too late. If you believe you were subjected to workplace discrimination or retaliation, contact an experienced employment lawyer immediately.