Even People with Different Religious and Ethnicities have the Right to Enjoy Equal Opportunities
Discriminatory acts, based on religious and/or ethnicity, include performance or utterance of derogatory and humiliating actions/words towards and against people due to their culture, language, ancestry or birthplace. Laws in the United States give equal opportunity to everyone, to both locals and migrants alike. This simply means that no one in the US (so long as the individual’s identity and qualifications have been recognized and acknowledged by the government) can be deprived of equal opportunity simply because he/she: comes from a foreign country; participates in practices or activities linked to a certain ethnic group; possesses an accent or name that can be identified with a national origin group; or, is married to someone or is associating with people who belong to a particular ethnicity.
Different federal and state laws prohibit all discriminatory practices related to employment. These practices include hiring, salary and compensation, fringe benefits, type of work, promotion, training, layoff or firing, and all other factors related to employment. Besides discrimination, harassment of people due to their ethnic or religious identity is also an unlawful act. Those who may be guilty of acts of harassment and/or discrimination include any company supervisor, the victim’s co-worker, a customer or a client.
Besides prohibiting offensive verbal remarks or physical acts, the law also mandates employers ensure that their company’s policies or practices, which all employees are required to observe, do not have any content that may create a negative effect on people with certain religious or ethnic affiliation, especially if these contents have nothing to do with business operations.
No employer may also base any employment-related decision (such as hiring, firing, promotion, etc.) on an employee’s accent, unless the accent is critical or highly-important in the performance of the job (in BPO companies, for instance, or a telephone operator job).
Those who feel that they have been harassed or discriminated should think of hiring legal counsel. Laws involving employment discrimination are complex and filing a complaint involves a long process that is subject to a statute of limitations. Having a knowledgeable labor lawyer at your side will help ensure that you accomplish everything correctly.