San Francisco Gender Discrimination Lawyer

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Advancement for women in the workplace has come a long way, but employment conditions are still far from being truly equal. Even when female workers have achieved the proper education and credentials, they are often still not considered as qualified as their male counterparts with either equal or less credentials and are paid significantly less. Oftentimes, women of color face a higher rate of gender inequality and unconscious bias in the workplace.

The glass ceiling may be chipping, but it is far from being broken. The Sampath Law Firm is committed to shattering that glass and helping you advance justice in the workplace by fighting sex and gender discrimination.

What is Gender Discrimination?

Gender discrimination refers to the unfair treatment of employees or job applicants based on their gender. This includes discrimination against someone because of their sex, gender identity, gender expression, or pregnancy status. Under California law, it is illegal for employers to make employment decisions (like hiring, firing, promotions, or pay) based on gender.

There are many ways gender discrimination can manifest itself in the workplace. To pursue a successful gender discrimination claim, you'll need to show that you are being treated differently because of your gender or characteristics associated with masculinity or femininity. Examples of gender discrimination include but are not limited to:

  • Different rates of pay for men and women doing the same or substantially similar work

  • Denial of benefits to husbands and families of female employees where the same employees are available to wives and families of male employees

  • Appearance standards that impose more stringent requirements on employees of one sex than on employees of the other sex

  • Termination of a female employee who becomes pregnant

  • Sudden performance issues attributed to a female employee who took pregancy leave

  • Better opportunities for promotion or training given to men but not female staff

If you believe you have been discriminated against based on your gender and that your rights have been violated by your employer, The Sampath Law Firm will work tirelessly to get you the justice you deserve. Contact our office to see if you have a potential case.

Applicable Gender Discrimination Laws

A number of key laws prohibit gender discrimination in the United States at both the state and federal levels:

  1. Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964: This federal law prohibits employers from discriminating against employees on the basis of sex, race, color, national origin, and religion. It applies to employers with 15 or more employees, including federal, state, and local government agencies, as well as private and public colleges and universities.

  2. Equal Pay Act of 1963 (EPA): The EPA requires that men and women in the same workplace be given equal pay for equal work. The jobs need not be identical, but they must be substantially equal. Note that the Equal Pay Act covers *all* forms of pay, including salary, overtime pay, bonuses, stock options, profit sharing and bonus plans, life insurance, vacation and holiday pay, cleaning or gasoline allowances, hotel accommodations, reimbursement for travel expenses, and benefits.

  3. Pregnancy Discrimination Act: An amendment to Title VII, the Pregnancy Discrimination Act prohibits discrimination based on pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions.

  4. California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA): This California state law provides broader protections than federal laws against discrimination, including gender discrimination, in the workplace. Compared to federal legislation, FEHA includes more protected categories, applies to a larger number of employers (including small businesses of five or more employees), has more comprehensive definitions of discrimination and harassment, and has stronger requirements for employer conduct and damages available to victims.

  5. California Equal Pay Act: This state-specific law is similar to the federal EPA but includes additional provisions. For example, the CA Equal Pay Act introduces the notion of "substantially similar work" and requires equal pay for employees who do work of equal skill, effort, and responsibility under similar working conditions – even when employees work at different locations under the same employer.

These federal and state laws work collectively to protect employees from gender and sex discrimination in various aspects of employment.

Gender Discrimination FAQs

Is gender discrimination limited to female victims?

Although we generally think women are most often the victims of gender discrimination and sexual harassment and that men are the perpetrators, this is not always the case. The law recognizes that both men and women can be discriminated against and harassed and that someone of the same or opposite sex can discriminate against or harass you. Gender equality encompasses more than just the protection of women's rights. 

At The Sampath Law Firm, our representation of people facing gender discrimination includes assisting clients who embrace traditional and non-traditional gender identities. The embarrassment and fear of reprisal may make you worried about speaking up. The attorneys at The Sampath Law Firm are sensitive to these issues and are here to assist you. Contact our office if you need a lawyer's advice.

Are LGBTQ+ individuals protected from sex discrimination?

LGBTQ+ individuals are often unlawfully singled out for disparate treatment because they do not conform with traditional gender stereotypes. This is wrong. You should know that there are numerous state and federal laws that protect your rights and that you do not have to tolerate this injustice.

The California Fair Employment and Housing Act expressly prohibits harassment and discrimination in employment because of an employee's gender identity, gender expression, or sexual orientation. Likewise, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act prohibits disparate treatment in employment against lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender individuals as a form of sex-based discrimination.

Contact an Experienced Gender Discrimination Lawyer in San Francisco

At SLF, we are committed to representing all individuals who have been harassed or discriminated against due to their sex, gender identity, gender expression, or pregnancy status. If you believe you are a victim of gender discrimination, contact our office to see if you have a potential case.

The Sampath Law Firm Is Here for You

At The Sampath Law Firm, we focus on employment law and we are here to listen to you and help you navigate the legal system.

Contact Us Today

The Sampath Law Firm is committed to answering your questions about employment-related law issues and other workplace injustices in California.

We'll gladly discuss your case with you at your convenience. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.