The pandemic had sweeping effects on California workers and the economy at large. Some companies saw increases in demand, but for many workers, the impacts were both adverse – and lasting. According to the new study released by the AARP, older women saw some of the worst effects, and they don’t appear to be subsiding. Fair employment advocates say age discrimination and sex discrimination play no little part in the phenomenon. Workers who believe they have been discriminated against on the basis of their age or gender should reach out to a long-time, trusted Los Angeles employment law firm.Los Angeles age discrimination lawyer

Some of the primary takeaways from the AARP study,

  • About 40 percent of mid-career and older women workers experienced at least one job interruption during the pandemic.
  • Of those who are still unemployed, roughly 70 percent have been out-of-work for six months or more.
  • Among those who are still employed, most remain concerned about their financial future and potential unemployment.
  • More than 25 percent report their financial situations have worsened over the course of the pandemic.

One common thread for all employed women was the implication of caregiving. It was reported that 1 in 3 took care of a child or grandchild home during the pandemic for remote schooling. For many, that meant they could only work certain shifts or hours or reduced hours. Nearly half of employed women at some point during the pandemic were caring for either a child, grandchild, or adult family member or friend.

Then factor in that age discrimination in hiring has long been a stubborn problem in America’s workplaces for years. Older and mid-career women are often the most significantly impacted. The AARP’s survey of nearly 34,000 women workers found that almost a third who were job hunting believed age discrimination had been a hurdle in their efforts to secure a new position. Continue Reading ›

Stronger protections against California workplace harassment and discrimination are on the way, with Gov. Gavin Newsome’s signing of the “Silenced No More Act,” or SB 331. The measure builds on the protections established in 2018 with the Stand Against Non-Disclosures (STAND) Act, targeting non-disclosure agreements in sexual harassment cases in the wake of the #MeToo movement. Los Angeles Employment Lawyer

As our Los Angeles employment lawyers can explain, SB 331 amends both the California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) and the California Code of Civil Procedures, Section 1001. It imposes major restrictions on both employment settlement agreements and severances. Continue Reading ›

California workplace racial discrimination led to a jury verdict of $137 million against car maker Tesla. The plaintiff, an elevator operator, alleged the auto manufacturer turned a blind eye to racial abuse he suffered as a Black employee.racial discrimination lawyer

According to The New York Times, plaintiff worked at the company’s factor in Fremont for about a year. Throughout his tenure, supervisors reportedly used racial slurs repeatedly when referring to him. He was one of the many Black workers interviewed by the Times in 2018 about workplace racial discrimination at the international company.

In interviews, internal communications and sworn legal statements filed by more than two dozen current and former employees and contractors for the country revealed years of serious racial harassment and discrimination reported at the company’s factory in Freemont, CA. The company previously said that in a company of its size, sometimes there would be inevitable “bad behavior,” but insisted there was never any pattern of discrimination or harassment.

Among the incidents reported by employees of color: Continue Reading ›

Most people are aware that state and federal anti-discrimination laws protect them from adverse employment actions on the basis of certain protected classes, such as race, gender, disability, and age. However, fewer know that per a legal doctrine known as associational discrimination, employers may also be barred from discrimination against workers based on a relationship they have with a member of a protected class. Los Angeles employment lawyer

Employers can be held liable for associational discrimination as well as associational retaliation. Such claims can be filed under provisions of the Americans With Disabilities Act (federal), as well as the California Fair Housing and Employment Act (FEHA). The ADA explicitly bars excluding or denying equal jobs/benefits to a person who is qualified on the basis of a known disability. It also prohibits discrimination of a qualified person based on their relationship to or association with someone who has a disability.

Associational discrimination laws can also be filed under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which shields workers on the basis of gender, religion, national origin, and race. As our Los Angeles employment discrimination attorneys can explain though, this law doesn’t expressly bar associative discrimination like the ADA does. However, numerous courts have upheld associational discrimination is applicable under Title VII. In fact, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit recently affirmed such a case, joining numerous other federal appeals courts in reaching this conclusion. Continue Reading ›

In a major victory for workers in California, state lawmakers passed the “Silenced No More Act,” granting workers who have suffered harassment or discrimination on-the-job to speak freely about it – even if they previously signed a non-disclosure agreement. Not only is this excellent news for those who have been directly impacted, but the effect is that secret settlements are no effectively barred. Los Angeles employment attorney

The measure, Senate Bill 331, amends Section 12964.5 of the Government Code, relating to civil actions. Specifically, it imbues workers with the right to discuss the abuse, harassment, and discrimination they endured at work. As our Los Angeles employment lawyers can explain, it also expands a previous prohibition on nondisparagement and confidentiality clauses that were overly broad.

The governor still has the option to veto, but if he signs it, the law will take effect at the start of 2022. Continue Reading ›

Few corporate arenas are immune from ageism and age discrimination in the workforce, but sales and retail settings are known to be some of the worst offenders.Los Angeles age discrimination lawyer

Recently, Reuters reported a federal class action age discrimination lawsuit had been filed against a drug maker, alleging the company only advertises its sales representative positions through college campus recruitment programs, and then fill the jobs with younger workers who were typically brought on initially as interns.

Plaintiffs allege the drug manufacturer is in violation the Age Discrimination and Employment Act, a federal law, as well as comparable state-level laws, which shield workers who are over the age of 40. In this case, workers in this protected age group were either deterred from filing for sales representative jobs or applied unsuccessfully, despite being more qualified than the younger individuals who were ultimately hired.

The company denies that managers were allegedly instructed to “not even bother” submitting candidates over 30 for consideration in sales position. Plaintiffs allege the company adopted hiring quotas about five years ago with the intention of packing their sales force with “early career professionals.” That’s a nice way of saying discriminating against older workers. Continue Reading ›

When it comes to California employment discrimination lawsuits alleging wrongful termination, a common defense is the “mixed motive.” That is, even where discrimination is a deemed a substantial motivating factor in firing someone, employers cans still effectively defend themselves if they can successfully argue the outcome would have been the same absent any such discrimination. In that situation, as it was in the 2013 case of Wynona Harris v. City of Santa Monica, employees may not be entitled to damages, back pay, or an order of restatement (often the primary relief many seek), though they may still be entitled to injunctive and declaratory relief, as well as compensation for reasonable attorneys’ fees and costs. racial discrimination

The high proof burdens in these employment law cases are one of the primary reasons we urge anyone considering a  claim for discrimination, harassment, wrongful termination, and/or retaliation, will work only with a highly experienced and skilled Los Angeles employment attorney with a track record of success in similar cases.

Recently, a similar case arose from an allegation of racial discrimination by a former scientist with the UCLA Medical Center. She alleged on-the-job, race-based harassment – which she did prove. In fact, jurors had previously awarded her $1.5 million in damages. However, in a review by a California Court of Appeals, the panel held that because the plaintiff was fired for legitimate reasons (notwithstanding race discrimination as a substantial motivating factor), the claimant’s damage award was reduced by more than $275,000.

As our L.A. racial discrimination lawyers can explain, the California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) holds that discrimination, retaliation, and harassment are separate wrongs, even if for the employee, it all appears connected. Each element of unlawful conduct has its own remedy. In the UCLA case, Birden v. The Regents of the University of California, the court held, a damage award for racial discrimination is only justified if that harassment ended with the employee losing his or her job. Continue Reading ›

A California non-profit wage theft lawsuit was settled recently for $170,000, according to Palo Alto Weekly. The organization is responsible for providing street cleaning services in communities around the Bay area. The class action claim was filed by a former employment specialist at the group, who alleged that she and others were routinely denied fair wages. Los Angeles wage and hour lawyer

According to the wage and hour lawsuit, the workers were not paid for overtime, denied break and lunch time compensation, and received late wage payments post-termination or resignation. Additionally, workers alleged employee misclassification, categorizing some workers as salaried and thus “exempt” from overtime pay under the California Labor Code. The pay rate for “salaried” employees, plaintiffs asserted, fell below the statutory level that would qualify them as exempt employees.

As our Los Angeles wage and hour lawyers can explain, California labor laws do apply to non-profit agencies, unless the individual in question is a volunteer, not an employee. As of Jan. 1, 2021, the statewide minimum wage in California is $14 hourly for companies with 26 or more employees and $13 hourly for those with 25 for fewer. However, some local ordinances set forth higher minimum wage rate than state law. For example, the minimum age in Los Angeles is $15 hourly for companies with 26 or more employees and $14.25 hourly for those with fewer. Where local minimum wage rates higher than state rates, employers must comply with the local law. Continue Reading ›

A former employee alleges Amazon’s pregnancy discrimination against her and failure to provide accommodations led her to suffer a miscarriage.pregnancy discrimination lawyer

According to Vice, the packer was 7 weeks pregnant when she suffered a miscarriage at the fulfillment center where she worked. In the weeks prior, she said she’d begged her warehouse manager and human resource office for lighter duty. She provided a doctor’s note requesting pregnancy accommodations, which indicated she was not to lift, push, pull or carry more than 20 pounds. She was also not to walk or stand for more than half of her shift. Her job involved loading packages onto delivery trucks. The bins she was responsible for lifting could be up to 50 pounds, repeatedly, over a 10-hour shift.

The worker said that when she provided the doctor’s note, she was told verbally that there were no specific areas for light work that wouldn’t require 15 pounds or more of lifting or for her not to be on her feet. Subsequently, her manager began repeatedly questioning why she was sitting, taking longer bathroom breaks and moving more slowly.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention note that the risk of miscarriage can increase when workers routinely engage in heavy lifting, standing on their feet for long hours and bending at the waist. Plaintiff said her manager was not accommodating of any of this. Although workers are only allowed 10 minutes of “time off task” daily, the size of the warehouse means it takes six minutes just to talk to the bathroom and back. It would be virtually impossible to take more than one bathroom break daily with those kind of restrictions. Continue Reading ›

Employers using social media platforms to advertise jobs and recruit potential employees is nothing new. Some did run into trouble tailoring their job ads to certain audiences (by age, gender, location, etc.), but most of those fields have been eliminated. Now, some employers are shifting their recruiting efforts to TikTok, a wildly popular video-sharing social networking service. Los Angeles employment discrimination lawyer

Last month, the company even launched its own pilot program with its own website that allowed people to apply for jobs through the app, which offered resources, tips and how to make a good pitch. Meanwhile, many employers, facing significant worker shortages, are using the app to reach out to potential workers.

By virtue of the fact that it is a video-based provider, it does leave prospective employees vulnerable to looks-based discrimination, sometimes referred to as appearance discrimination or lookism.

Of course, one’s appearance is not an indication of their work ethic or character. That said, society often puts a significant value on one’s appearance. Certainly, that’s not fair, but is it illegal? Appearance discrimination isn’t a category that is technically recognized as being protected by employment laws in California, but it could be actionable when the employer’s conduct amounts to gender discrimination, age discrimination, racial discrimination or disability discrimination. Continue Reading ›

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