How Do I Report Race-Based Discrimination in the Workplace?

employee experiencing race-based discrimination

While we like to think everyone is treated equally, this is not always true. When you go to work, you should not fear harassment and prejudice from coworkers and higher-ups because of your race. If you’ve endured bias in the workplace, a New York City employment discrimination lawyer may be able to help. Keep reading to learn more about how race-based discrimination presents itself in the workplace and how to report this harassment.

What Is Race-Based Discrimination?

As the name suggests, race-based discrimination occurs when someone is treated differently because of their race. This can occur from the minute an employer receives an application to when the employee joins a team. For example, employers may not even read a resume because of an applicant’s name. Unfortunately, discrimination in the hiring process is challenging to prove, as there are many factors that go into the hiring process.

During periods of employment, discrimination is often subtle. Though there are far too many forms of explicit and demeaning comments, such as telling an African American employee that they will never receive a promotion due to their race, these are not as common.

In many instances, there are subtle actions that can add up over time to create a hostile environment. This includes comments and behavior that are questionable, known as microaggressions. For example, refusing to learn how to pronounce someone’s name because it is too difficult to say or assuming a person of color is in a lower position simply based on their race are examples of microaggressions.

Similarly, there are some instances where an employer may refuse to promote an employee of color. For example, if you believe you will become the new manager of your team, but a white colleague with far less experience and more write-ups receives the position, this may be because of your race.

How Do I Report These Instances?

Before you can learn how to file a report, it’s essential to understand that the law is on your side.

The most crucial legislation to protect you in this instance is the Civil Rights Act of 1964, specifically Title VII. This section specifically prohibits employers from the following discriminatory behavior:

  • Making hiring or firing decisions based on race
  • Demoting or punishing an employee because of their race
  • Segregating employees or applicants
  • Paying employees less or refusing to give them benefits because of their race

If you’ve experienced any of the aforementioned behaviors or any other actions that are rooted in racism, you’ll want to file a report with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission or the NYC Commission of Human Rights. However, you should also consult with an attorney to discuss your legal options, as any form of prejudice is unlawful.

At Mirza Law, we believe no one should fear going to work. If you believe you’ve suffered because of racial discrimination, it is your right to seek justice. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you through this challenging period.