Practice Areas /
Discrimination and Harassment

There are many types of actions that can constitute discrimination or harassment in the workplace. Although such unlawful behavior is sometimes overt, it can also be subtle or even concealed.

Harassment can include derogatory or obscene language, inappropriate jokes or comments, the posting of inappropriate materials, or unwanted touching or physical contact. When this behavior becomes so pervasive or extreme that it creates a hostile work environment, it becomes harassment. Federal law prohibits harassment based on race, color, religion, national origin, disability, age, sex, and most recently, genetics. The New York State Human Rights Law and other similar municipal laws also prohibit harassment based on sexual orientation, marital or familial status, military status, and a number of other characteristics, in addition to those already protected under federal law.

Similarly, there are federal and state laws that prohibit your employer from discriminating against you because of your age, gender, national origin, race, religion, sexual orientation, a pregnancy, or a disability or perceived disability. The above-listed characteristics are protected from discrimination in matters involving:

  • hiring and firing
  • promotion, demotion or transfer
  • compensation
  • assignment or classification of employees
  • layoff, reduction in force (RIF) or forced retirement
  • job advertisements and recruitment
  • testing
  • use of company facilities
  • training and apprenticeship programs
  • retirement plans, health/medical and fringe benefits
  • disability leave and severance

If you are a worker who is experiencing harassment or discrimination, there are laws to protect you. You do not have to tolerate your employer’s wrongful acts, and you do not have to wait for something to happen before you contact an attorney. Likewise, if a coworker interferes with your job performance or creates a hostile work environment with his unlawful conduct, you have the right to file a complaint or seek other legal remedies.

Attorneys at Virginia & Ambinder, LLP have the comprehensive experience to handle all of the facets and intricacies of litigation involving harassment or discrimination claims. If think that your employer or coworkers are creating a hostile work environment, discriminating against you, or harassing you based on a protected characteristic, contact us to schedule an initial consultation. Our office hours are 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., with weekend and late-evening appointments available by pre-arrangement. All of our consultations are free and confidential. Spanish, Polish and Russian language services are available.

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