Sexual Orientation Discrimination in the Workplace: You Have Rights

American employees enjoy a number of protections under law in terms of discrimination in the workplace, and many laws prohibit discrimination at work because of sexual orientation. Put simply, under New York State law and, in some cases, federal law, employees may not be discriminated at work because they are homosexual, bisexual or heterosexual. Whether you are gay, straight, lesbian or bisexual, then, you have rights under law – and your employer should be aware of them and abide by them. Sadly, of course, that doesn’t always happen. If you believe that you are being discriminated against in the workplace because of your sexual orientation and live in the metro NYC area, Leeds Brown Law can help.

Laws Regarding Sexual Orientation Discrimination in the Workplace

Per New York State law, employers are prohibited from discriminating against employees because of their sexual orientation. Whether based on your actual or perceived sexuality, then, employers are not allowed to treat you differently. Even if your employer’s perception of your sexual orientation is incorrect, if they are discriminating against you because of this false belief, they are breaking the law.

Although there are no federal laws on the books regarding sexual orientation discrimination in the workplace – with the exception of employees of the federal government – some cases of discrimination may overlap with laws regarding sex and gender orientation discrimination, which is prohibited by federal law. Moreover, New York State laws regarding this type of discrimination do apply to the private sector, and those who are subjected to such unfair treatment should know that they are entitled to compensation.

Examples of Discrimination Based on Sexual Orientation in the Workplace

To ensure that your rights are being protected as a New York State employee, it’s important to recognize sexual orientation discrimination at work when you see it. Some examples include:

  • Being told not to bring a same-sex partner to a work event even though opposite-sex partners are welcome
  • Being harassed by fellow employees because of your actual or perceived sexual orientation at work
  • Being denied promotions strictly due to your sexual orientation
  • Being subjected to conversations among coworkers in which derogatory comments are made about gay, lesbian or bisexual individuals
  • Being treated differently by your manager or supervisor after they learn about your sexual orientation
  • Comments like “he is not manly enough for the job” or “she is just not feminine enough for the position” by employers when making hiring decisions

Protect Your Rights when Being Discriminated at Work Because of Your Sexual Orientation

As a worker in the state of New York, you are protected by laws that explicitly prohibit gender discrimination in the workplace. Although bringing a lawsuit against an employer is a sensitive issue, and you may be reluctant to take such a step, it is the best and only way to become fairly compensated by law. If you believe that you are being treated differently by or discriminated against by your employer, it is crucial to enlist the help of qualified employment attorneys. In the metro NYC area, Leeds Brown Law is the name to trust in such matters.

Take the First Step Today

Why should you contact Leeds Brown Law when facing sexual orientation in the workplace? For one thing, we have more than 30 years of experience regarding employment discrimination in the NYC area. With offices in Nassau County and New York City, we are available to assist clients across the region, including in Manhattan; the Bronx; Staten Island; Brooklyn; Westchester County; Suffolk County; and Nassau County. For your convenience, we offer Spanish translation services and extended office hours. Additionally, we provide free consultations during which you can determine whether you have a viable case against your employer and are entitled to compensation. With a number of fee arrangements, including full contingency in some cases, we offer the flexibility that you need to take steps to protect your rights. If you’re being discriminated at work because you are gay, lesbian or bisexual, contact Leeds Brown Law today to schedule a free consultation.

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