Older workers in California may be the victims of age discrimination. Employers may appreciate the fact that the knowledge and experience of older workers are valuable assets for a company. However, they may also consider the fact that these more experienced workers who earn substantial salaries could be replaced by less experienced individuals who will cost the company far less in wages. Age-related workplace discrimination is, therefore, not an uncommon occurrence.
A recent employee dispute at a meat packing plant in a state other than California has generated a lot of headlines in recent weeks. Because of the nature of the story and the tense global atmosphere in the world, it seems fair to expect that many people might have questions about the events and whether any workplace discrimination claims might be in the offing.
Discrimination is an easy thing to define. According to the dictionary, it is "the practice of unfairly treating a person or group of people differently from other people or groups of people." What tends to be harder is knowing when discrimination actually is taking place.
For many workers-of-color, the face of discrimination comes long before they even get a chance to get their foot in the door for their first day. It may even begin when they first hand in their resume. According to recent studies surrounding workplace and hiring discrimination for minority workers, some applicants resumes are being overlooked, simply because their names may sound too “black.”
Employees in California are protected against unlawful discrimination. Individuals who have suffered workplace discrimination have recourse, and they don't have to face these situations alone. A former Amtrak employee in another state recently filed an age discrimination complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and has now commenced a federal lawsuit against his former employers.
If there is one thing that the recent recession has taught a lot of people, it is that no job is secure. And as we noted in a couple of posts late last month and early this month, many who found themselves in tough situations during those hard times were individuals in the older ranks of workers.
Earlier this summer, we observed that one of the next great battlegrounds over gay rights would focus on the workplace. As one post from July 9 noted, the advances that have been realized in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court decision on gay marriage have not necessarily translated into employment.
Gender-based pay inequality in California might have been dealt a serious setback earlier this week when Gov. Jerry Brown signed Senate Bill 358. And it is possible that material change could rest heavily on the mere substitution of a couple new words for a single word that existed in a previous state labor law.