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Job Discrimination

Laws Prohibiting Job Discrimination and Promote Equal Employment Opportunity Laws in Hospitality Industry (EEO Laws)


In the United States of America, several laws have been composed in order to prevent discriminative behaviors and illegal policies in hospitality as well as in other industries. These laws consist the most significant regulation system against job discrimination considering the seriousness that characterizes it. Employers usually are liable in discriminatory practices against their employees, since the actually overuse their authority. As a result, several cases can be led to courts and these laws can play a catalytic role in the final resolution. The most important laws are created by the Equal Employment Opportunity Laws Commission, which is responsible for every kind of discriminatory practices in hospitality industry as well as in other industries. Further in this article I am going to explain in depth each of these laws and the consequences of disobeying them. Additionally, the most significant discriminatory practices will be described, including those that are legal in specific occasions and finally the equal employment opportunity laws that cover the employers.

The Laws Prohibiting Job Discrimination

There are several laws concerning job discrimination and the most significant are:

The Equal Pay Act, 1963 prevents discrimination concerning sexes and provides equal opportunities for men and women. In many occasions we can observe biased and insulting behaviors by employers towards their employees because of their sex. There are also cases when hiring someone is performed according to the candidate's sex, and skills are not taken into consideration. The Equal Pay Act provides protection to the employees against such situations.

Title VII, Civil Rights Act, 1964. That law protects employees from hostile and inimical circumstances by the employer because of their color, sex, religion, national origin and race and strongly forbids such behaviors. For example, an employer usually contravenes candidates of different race or color because of his/her racial discrimination. According to Title VII this kind of discrimination should not affect employer's decision.

The Age Discrimination in Employment Act, 1967. That law protects employees who are 40 years old or above and prohibits discrimination against them because of their age. The opportunities that appear should be equal to older people due to their experience, knowledge and skills and should be taken into consideration that all people have equal chances in employment.

The 501, 505 Sections of Rehabilitation Act, 1973. That law protects superior employees with disabilities that work for the government and strongly prohibits discrimination against them because of their status. There are several other laws concerning individuals with disabilities, since it is a very important issue for the society.

Titles I and V of Americans with Disabilities Act, 1990 is another law concerning individuals with disabilities and forbids in any case, the discrimination against them from local or state governments.

The Civil Rights Act, 1991 protects employees and provides compensations and remedies in circumstances of purposive employment discrimination. In other words, employers should take into consideration that hiring should be performed properly and discrimination or racial differences should be skipped.

The Title II of Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act, 2008 (GINA) is based on the genetic information of a candidate or an employee. That law forbids employment discrimination concerning genetic information of the candidates.

The majority of those laws are supported by the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, which is also responsible for properly coordinating any employment policies. However, there are also several other laws that are not supported by the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, but are significant as well, since they provide protection to applicants and potential employees against discrimination and racism. For example, there is the Civil Service Reform Act, 1978 which forbids any kind of employment discrimination. In other words, based on the Civil Service Reform Act, every employer is forced to offer employment based on the skills of the applicants and not to take into consideration their color, race, sex, religion, disability or national origin. Apart from the laws that are based on racial discrimination based on color and race, there are several other laws that prohibit employment based on the marital status of the candidates and their sexual orientation. Employers are usually prejudiced against people with different sexual orientation or pregnants, since they believe that they cannot perform adequately and are unable to accomplish their tasks. In addition, these laws also provide protection to employees that complain and prohibit any retaliation against them.

Prohibited Discriminatory Practices

The laws that are mentioned above prohibit several discriminatory practices that usually take place in the procedure of employment. The most significant discriminatory practices against employees are:

An important discriminatory practice is harassment that is based on the color, religion, race, disability or sex of the applicant and is totally illegal to reject these groups because of their statuses. On the other hand, people who feel that are being treated with unfairness due to their status usually sue their employers, since any reprisals are prohibited by most of the laws due to discriminatory behavior by the employer. Additionally, the majority of the employers believe in ambiguous stereotypes and are influenced by uncertain theories about the skills and abilities of several groups of people such as individuals who believe in a different religion, handicapped or those who have special genetic information. As a result, it is totally illegal to deny employment opportunities to those groups of people who do not have similar attributes with their employers or reject individuals with physical or mental disabilities. Employers are requested to post properly the notices in order to inform the employees of their rights according to the federal laws and mention that charges against discrimination cannot affect the employees with any reprisals or dismissals, as long as they do not exceed the legal limitations. All of the above of course should be performed under the cautious and consecutive oversight of the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. The results of such actions are very positive, since many States have officially enacted to protect employees and support their rights in any discriminatory circumstances, especially in harassment based on sexual orientation, political views or marital status.

Different Kinds of Discriminatory Practices

In employment cases, many employers do not obey in the employment regulations by the federal laws and are usually liable in discriminatory practices. Such actions are illegal and are being invigilated by several laws responsible in such occasions. These discriminatory practices usually occur because of the differentiation in the attributes between the employer and the applicants or employees. Title VII prohibits these actions and generally any discriminatory practices based on an employee's color, race, sex, national origin and religion. It was always illegal to discriminate against people because of their national origin, their place of birth or because of their nation's culture and traditional characteristics. Title VII also prevents an employer to force his/her employees not to speak their language, unless it is absolutely necessary and the consequences of such actions should be noticed before. An employer is also responsible for the religious accommodation of his/her employees, as long as the preparation of such activities inflict additional damage to the company.

Title VII also forbids sex discrimination especially in specific cases. An employer sometimes is liable to sexually harass his/her staff by requesting the employees to perform additional duties or sexual based tasks and by pressing them to accomplish their duties more than usual. Another kind of sexual harassment is the situation of "hostile environment" which occurs by the rejection of the employee to perform the employer's suspicious additional tasks, which leads the employer to act inimically. In addition, the "hostile environment" can arise from other reasons as well, such as the employee's color, race, religion or disability. It is also illegal to discriminate a person in cases of pregnancy because such occasions should be considered as cases of illness and cannot be treated in a different way. Age discrimination can also be considered as illegal practice when an employer sets age limitations in employment. Such actions can be legal only in specific occasions when the law allows them. An employer should also treat in a similar way both younger and older employees and any wages' increases or reductions should be decided based upon the employees' skills, effort and efficiency and not their age.

Titles I, V of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)

The Titles I and V of the Americans with Disabilities Act supports individuals with mental or physical disabilities and forbids any discriminatory practices against them in employment situation. A person with disabilities under the ADA law is any individual who lacks minor or major life activities and appears to have one or more physical or mental disabilities. The disabilities can be considered any liabilities that an individual can have such as movement or visual impairments and difficulty in speaking or hearing. Additionally, mental impairments can be considered as major life activities and under the ADA law is illegal to discriminate against any liabilities that have been mentioned.

Under that specific law, an employer is responsible for providing a proper labor accommodation for all the employees with mental or physical disabilities such as suitable equipment for these kinds of workers, supportive machines and "qualified" readers in order to help them in communication. "Qualified" employees can be considered any individuals with disabilities that can fundamentally perform any functions of their positions without proper accommodation. An employer usually is liable to forget the regulations and proceed into legal activities ignoring the needs of people with disabilities. However, employers are not responsible for providing personal items for helping handicapped workers such as special headsets or goggles. Nevertheless, proper or "reasonable" accommodation should be provided to an individual with disabilities when such actions do not damage the employer's company and do not trouble the whole corporation with unnecessary financial losses, since the ADA law cannot cover employees under those circumstances. The ADA law does not protect the employees that are liable to any usage of narcotics or alcohol. There are no prohibitions when an employer decides to dismiss any alcoholic employees or drug-addicts, since the ADA will not get involved and employer's judgment is what counts on such occasions.

Employers Covered by Equal Employment Opportunity Laws

The Title VII, ADA law and Title II of Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act, 2008 (GINA) cover all the employers that actually employ 15 and more employees. In addition the laws above cover any private employers that employ 20 or more individuals. Title VII, GINA and the Equal Pay Act (EPA) can cover the federal government as well. The federal government can also be covered by the 501 and 505 sections of the Rehabilitation Act, 1973 as we mentioned before, however, different procedures should be followed in order to process any possible complaints of federal discrimination. There are also several laws that are not forced by the Equal Employment Opportunity laws that cover most of the federal agency employees. Title VII of 1964 Civil Rights Act makes it unlawful for employers of 15 or more persons in any industry that affect commerce to discriminate against any individual respecting compensations, conditions, advantages of employment because of color, race, sex, national origin and sexual orientation. This specific law also prohibits employment organizations and labor unions from discrimination in such situations. This Act permits only an exception in several occasions, when religion, national origin and sex is a "bona fide" occupational qualification reasonably necessary to the normal operation of the particular business or enterprise.

Equal Employment Opportunity Charge Processing Procedures

First of all, an employee who believes that his/her rights have been violated, can instantly file a charge of discrimination supported by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). In addition, every employee, applicant or company can also file a charge, when another person faces similar issues by supporting and protecting him/her and his/her aggrieved identity. When a filing charge procedure is about to begin, the EEOC office should be properly informed in order to make the appropriate arrangements. Additionally, all the employees and candidates should take into consideration the "fact sheet" about the "Federal Sector Equal Employment Opportunity Complaint Processing". Apart from the previous actions, additional practices should be performed, since in order to file a charge, appropriate information should be provided. Most of the Laws that are enforced by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission necessitate filing a charge with EEOC before a court case might be filed in the court. The time limits in order to file a charge are strict, since the charge should be composed within 180 days from the date the offence has been applied. However, the Equal Pay Act does not cover those time limits, since that Act does not necessitate to first filing a charge with the support of EEOC in order to go to the court legally.

In the United States of America, many of those states use anti-discrimination laws and have organization that actually enforce those laws and are totally responsible for protecting and maintaining them. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission calls these organizations as "Fair Employment Practices Agencies" (FEPA). EEOC and FEPA avoid repetition of effort, when simultaneously guaranteeing that the charging party's rights under the particular state law. There are actually to different types of filing a charge under the oversight of EEOC with FEPA. On the one hand, if a charge is filed with a FEPA and simultaneously is covered by the federal law, the FEPA can "dual file" the charge with EEOC in order to protect the federal rights. On the other hand, if a charge is filed with EEOC and simultaneously is covered by the federal law, EEOC can "dual file" the charge with the local FEPA and normally maintains charge for handling.


Conclusively, we can observe that the main anti-discrimination regulation system covers everyone according to under the proper oversight of Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, which enforce all the laws and acts that are previously mentioned in that document. The fact that the Commission supports so strongly these anti-discrimination laws, demonstrates the respect and integrity they show for the lawful rights of all employees and employers who work in the United States of America. Illegal means should not take place, and according to the EEOC everyone is covered and protected by these laws, even if the circumstances are ominous. Discrimination should be abandoned in any case, since the consequences are devastating for employers that breach those laws and perform any discriminatory practices.