What is Sexual Orientation Discrimination?
Sexual orientation discrimination occurs when an employer discriminates against an individual because they are perceived or actually gay, lesbian, bi-sexual, and/or transgender.
Heterosexuals can also experience sexual orientation discrimination.Discriminating based on sexual orientation can include the following behavior:
- Not hiring an applicant
- Being passed over for a promotion
- Wrongful termination
- Poor performance evaluations
- Withholding training or other job resources
- Denying specific benefits
California Law Prohibits Sexual Orientation Discrimination
Sexual orientation, like other forms of discrimination, is illegal in California under The Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA). California is one of 21 states, including the District of Columbia that actually protects LGBT individuals from employment discrimination in private and public workplaces.
Federal Laws are Lacking
There are no federal laws prohibiting sexual orientation discrimination in private sector workplaces. However, the federal government does have policies in place. In 1998, Executive Order 13087 was issued to prohibit discrimination against individuals based on their sexual orientation for employees or applicants of the federal government.
There could be a change on the horizon. The Employment Non-Discrimination Act was introduced to Congress on April 25, 2013. If passed, it would provide basic protections against sexual orientation and gender identity discrimination.
If you have questions about sexual orientation discrimination or feel you have been a victim and need advice, please call us. We understand this subject is a personal matter and we can provide more detail to help you. You can reach us toll free at 888-500-8469.