While racial issues in the nation are not perfect, they are nowhere near the level they were just a few short decades ago. This is true especially within the workplace. Racial discrimination is still very much an issue for many Illinois businesses, but they have the ability – and legal requirement – to ensure that it never happens on their watch. Unfortunately, a racial discrimination lawyer in Libertyville understands that far more businesses want to maintain the status quo among the majority of their workers, and therefore fail to rectify the situation.
This was what happened to a Chicago company, which was recently hit by a lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. According to the National Law Review, the suit alleges that the baking company received multiple complaints about discriminatory and harassing actions and words directed at black individuals. Instead of handling the problem, they simply did nothing or as little as possible in response. This is a direct violation of the law, which states that if employers know about harassment and discriminatory practices, they must stop it immediately.
Role of the EEOC
Many Illinois companies are investigated every year by the EEOC. It is the EEOC’s main goal and purpose to enforce federal laws prohibiting any type of discrimination in the workplace. In fulfilling its role, the EEOC processes claims, or charges, of discrimination, enforces the laws administratively, and conducts litigation when businesses fail to abide by the law. This is why the EEOC, not the victim, was the party responsible for bringing about the lawsuit.
Protections to prevent such behavior
The Civil Rights Act of 1964 was created specifically to prevent this kind of workplace discrimination. According to the National Law Review, Title VII of the Act specifically prohibits all workplace discrimination and harassment that stems from the victims race. A racial discrimination lawyer in Libertyville may understand that although the law is clear, many businesses fail to act in their employees’ best interests by putting a stop to discriminatory and harassing practices. Harassment, which often occurs in the workplace, can include any of the following:
- Racial slurs
- Offensive and derogatory remarks about an individual’s race or skin color
- Displaying racially offensive symbols
When simple teasing or offhand comments become frequent and severe enough that it creates a hostile work environment or causes an adverse employment decision, harassment may have occurred.
Workers do not have to accept listening to humiliating or offensive comments on a daily basis while at work. Those who have been racially discriminated against in the workplace can seek assistance from a racial discrimination lawyer in Libertyville. With an attorney’s help, victims have a greater chance of seeing the results they desire.