What Is Gender Discrimination in New York?

Employees have the right to work in a discrimination-free environment, where they can freely express their gender.

It is the employer’s responsibility to foster this type of workplace by adopting certain policies and practices.

Federal, state, and local law prohibit discrimination on the basis of gender, but proving a gender discrimination case can be challenging.

Below, we will explain what is gender discrimination in the workplace, what laws are in place to protect employees, what types of acts are discriminatory, and what remedies are available when gender discrimination in the workplace occurs.

What Is Gender Discrimination in the Workplace?

Gender discrimination in the workplace occurs when an employer (or potential employer) treats an employee (or potential employee) differently because of his or her gender.

Gender includes gender identity, gender expression, and sexual orientation. 

It is worth noting the difference between “sex” and “gender.”

While these terms are often used interchangeably, they are distinct and have different meanings.  Sex is biologically assigned at birth, and gender is how a person identifies and how society views them. 

Examples of Gender Discrimination in the Workplace

Gender discrimination can happen anytime during the hiring process, while employed, or upon terminating the employment relationship.

This type of discrimination comes in many forms and can occur in any business-related activity, policy, or behavior.

For example, refusing to hire a gay man because of his sexual orientation or not promoting a woman because of her gender is gender discrimination.

Here are some instances where gender discrimination in the workplace can occur:

  • Hiring, promoting, or firing;
  • Advertising;
  • Benefits and compensation; and 
  • Any action or inaction related to the terms and conditions of employment.

Creating or allowing a hostile work environment is also a form of gender discrimination. 

What Laws Protect Employees from Gender Discrimination in the Workplace?

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 is a federal law that protects employees and applicants from gender discrimination in the workplace.

This law applies to public and private employers with 15 or more employees, the federal government, employment agencies, and labor organizations.

There are additional protections at the state and local levels. New York actually has one of the strongest anti-discrimination laws in the country.

Specifically, the New York State Human Rights Law and New York City Human Rights Law give New York employees the right to a workplace free from gender discrimination. 

Speak with a Gender Discrimination Lawyer

Gender discrimination in the workplace cases can be difficult to prove. Even though the discrimination may be and feel apparent to you, the bar is quite high to be successful.

You need to show that you were discriminated against and that the discrimination was based on your gender. This is where the employment lawyers at Ottinger Employment Lawyers can help. 

At Ottinger Employment Lawyers, we have been assisting clients with work-related issues since 1999. Our New York employment lawyers represent employees of all different job levels. 

Contact us online or call anytime to schedule an appointment to discuss your case. 

For details about our New York office, click here.

Author Photo

Robert Ottinger, Esq.

Robert Ottinger is an employment attorney who focuses on representing executives and employees in employment disputes. Before starting his firm, Robert slugged it out in courtrooms trying cases for the government. Robert served as a Deputy Attorney General for the California Department of Justice in Los Angeles and then as Assistant Attorney General for the New York Attorney General’s Office in Manhattan.

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