Sexual ORIENTATION Discrimination
In California, sexual orientation discrimination is against the law. Employers cannot discriminate against employees based on their sexual orientation. Employees cannot be denied promotions or advancement in employment based on sexual orientation.
Are you being harassed at work because of your gender or sexual orientation?
California is one of the fifty states that protects against discrimination because of gender or sexual orientation. The California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) prohibits employment discrimination because of sexual orientation, including homosexual, heterosexual, bisexual, transsexual and transgender employees.
According to the California Government Code Section 12926(q), “Sexual orientation means heterosexuality, homosexuality, and bisexuality.”
According to the California Penal Code Section 422.56, “Gender means sex, and includes a person's gender identity and gender related appearance and behavior whether or not stereotypically associated with the person's assigned sex at birth.”
Those are important distinctions, because the laws protect not only people who identify themselves as a particular gender or sexual orientation, but also people who are perceived – rightly or wrongly – to have the characteristics of a particular gender or sexual orientation.
What rights do you have?
Whatever your actual or perceived sexual orientation, you have the right to a workplace free of sexual stereotyping, threats and harassment, with equal treatment and policies in hiring, benefits, promotions, discipline and termination. Sexual orientation protections may extend to domestic partner benefits.
What should you do?
Sexual orientation protections are complex and may overlap other legal protections. If you believe that because of your sexual orientation you may not have been hired for a position for which you were qualified, you have been treated differently in terms of benefits or promotions, or you have been unfairly terminated, you should speak with an employment law professional, such as Shannon Foley.
Contact Foley Lyman Law Group LLP
To speak with legal counsel who will listen to your concerns, inform you of your options and represent you effectively, contact Foley Lyman Law Group at 310.706.4050 for a confidential consultation. You can also send us an email to obtain more information or schedule an appointment with one of our award winning employment and business lawyers.