Race Discrimination

Employment Laws | The Vegas Lawyers

Race Discrimination Lawyer in Las Vegas

Racial Discrimination and Harassment Laws

Although there are clear laws prohibiting race discrimination in the workplace, it is an unfortunate fact of life that some employees still experience discrimination based upon their race or color. Do you think you’re a victim of workplace discrimination because of your race?  If so, you’re not alone. Many people experience racial discrimination and harassment by employers, as well as their fellow employees.  It’s completely unacceptable and it’s against the law.   

The Vegas Lawyers legal team will help you determine whether you were, in fact, a victim of discrimination and will help you fight for your civil rights and liberties.  Not all discrimination can necessarily be the basis for a lawsuit.  At The Vegas Lawyers we’ll help you understand your legal rights.  Call us today at (702) 707-7000 or get in touch through our website for a consultation.     

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964

Under federal law, race discrimination in the workplace, like many other forms of discrimination, is prohibited. Passed in 1964 at the height of the Civil Rights Movement, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act makes it illegal to discriminate on the basis of race with respect to the following aspects of employment:

  • Deny pay or promotion
  • Refuse to hire someone
  • Provide unequal pay for the same job
  • Demote an employee
  • Refuse benefits
  • Assign less desirable job duties
  • Give unfair disciplinary action
  • Fail to provide adequate training
  • Terminate an employee
  • Harass someone
  • Retaliate against an employee for filing a complaint about harassment/discrimination

Discrimination can be based on your actual race or the following:

  • Perceived race
  • Hair color
  • Hair texture
  • Facial features
  • Skin color
  • Associating with people of a certain race
  • Marriage/partnership with someone of a different race

What You Need to Prove Race Discrimination

It’s important to understand that claims of discrimination based on race and color are complex. Employers are not quick to admit that they fostered a hostile environment or that anything they said or did was because of their employee’s race.  Many employees are shocked to learn during litigation that co-workers they thought were going to be supportive suddenly have memory lapses or can’t recall events. 

Why does this happen?  Because people are often afraid to lose their jobs and so they try to stay away from any situation that can cause them to suffer retaliation.  This is why employment cases are notoriously difficult to prosecute.  Haven’t you seen videos of someone on a subway being unfairly harassed and no one intervenes to stop the abuse?  It happens because human beings become fearful for their own safety.  It takes the rare person who is willing to stand up against injustice.  The same dynamics are often at work in employment cases.     

In addition to the hesitancy many co-workers have about “speaking up,” another frustrating aspect of employment cases is that employers will often come up with trumped up reasons for terminating the person’s employment or for not giving them certain employment privileges.  In other words, the employer will simply lie or make things up.     

Given all of these points, it is crucial to have a lawyer that understands the employments laws and knows how to win.  It is on you and your legal team to prove race discrimination was the foundation of the actions of your employer.

Here is a breakdown of legal theories that you can make to press a case for race discrimination:

Race Retaliation

You have a claim for race retaliation if you were fired, disciplined, or punished for merely filing a race discrimination complaint or complaining to “HR” and/or your supervisor about race discrimination.  The real claim here is not that you were discriminated based upon your race but instead that you were retaliated against (i.e. punished) for claiming race discrimination.  The race discrimination is incidental to the retaliation.     

In this situation, you have a legal basis to make out a claim even if your original claim of race/color discrimination is not substantiated.  In other words, you have a right to file a racial discrimination claim whether you have evidence of the discrimination or not.  However, like any other case, having the right evidence will determine whether you can prevail. 

Disparate Impact

The United States Supreme Court ruled in the case of Griggs v. Duke Power Company that certain employment requirements, such as aptitude tests, can disparately impact ethnic minorities.  Such practices are illegal if the requirements are not considered “reasonably related” to a certain job description and the responsibilities that fall under that position.  The “disparate impact” theory of race discrimination attacks a policy that, on its face, may seem legitimate, but in actuality impacts a specific racial minority group to a larger extent and to a greater (i.e. disparate) degree than other races.   

Racially Discriminatory Treatment

If an employer failed to hire you, did not provide you with certain perks/benefits/training after you were hired, or terminated your employment because of race, color, or ethnicity, you have endured racially discriminatory treatment.

In these situations, you need to provide evidence to make your claim and win your case.  Direct evidence is best, though the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and the Courts will consider comparative and circumstantial evidence when reviewing your case.

  • Direct evidence:  An example of direct evidence would be negative and degrading comments made about your race.  You do not need to be the direct recipient of such comments.  If the comments were made to someone else, such as a coworker or someone in management, they are considered direct evidence of discrimination.
  • Comparative/circumstantial:  An example of circumstantial evidence in a race discrimination case would be evidence of your punishment for something that employees of different races did without equal punishment or any punishment whatsoever.  In other words, circumstantial evidence is indirect evidence that proves a point.   

Working with a legal team like The Vegas Lawyers will help you create a solid case.  By delving into the facts of your case, our team may be able to show that the employer’s response to allegations discrimination are pretextual and that your legal rights have indeed been violated.  Again, these are hard cases and therefore having the right attorney by your side is crucial.   

Hostile Work Environment Based Upon Race

A work atmosphere tinged with severe and pervasive comments centered upon race can be the basis for a hostile work environment claim.  A person proves a hostile work environment claim by demonstrating the following: (1) he or she was subjected to discriminatory intimidation because of his/her race, (2) the conduct was unwelcome, (3) the conduct was sufficiently severe or pervasive as to alter the terms and conditions of the victim’s employment and create an abusive work environment.

The hostile work environment theory applicable to race discrimination also applies to cases involving sexual harassment.  The important point to remember with respect to hostile work environment claims is that one or two off-handed comments will not be enough to sue for hostile work environment.  The comments have to be severe and pervasive – meaning they occur with a lot of frequency.  On the other, particular types of conduct may not require more than one act to bring a hostile work environment claim.  Again, this highlights the importance of having the right lawyer assisting you in analyzing evidence to ensure you have a viable claim for discrimination.      

Filing an EEO Claim – What You Need to Know

An Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) claim may be filed by:

  • Any employee
  • A group of employees
  • An aggrieved applicant

At all stages of the process, the aggrieved party has a right to be represented.

Before filing, you need to gather all information you have to prove your claim. Gathering the facts will help you determine whether discrimination has occurred or if there has been a misunderstanding. Do not just discuss the matter with your fellow employees. Talk to supervisors, “HR” representatives, or an administrative officer who can provide you with information/evidence needed to support your claim.

702-707-7000

We Will Help You Fight for Your Civil Rights

Racial discrimination is unacceptable – and in this day and age, it is something that you should not have to worry about, let alone deal with.

The Vegas Lawyers’ legal team is on your side.  We are dedicated to helping anyone who has suffered from racial discrimination in the workplace, including job termination and harassment.

Our racially diverse team has decades of experience that they will use to fight for you. That, coupled with compassionate care, helps our clients feel safe, secure, and confident that we are the right legal team to help them deal with such a delicate and emotionally taxing situation.

Call The Vegas Lawyers today at (702) 707-7000 or get in touch with us for an appointment through this website.

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