Employers in Massachusetts are prohibited from discriminating against employees on the basis of gender under the Civil Rights Act of 1963 and the Equal Pay Act. Accordingly, gender may not be the basis for any employer decisions regarding pay, hiring policies, or promotion requirements. They are also required to ensure that working conditions are not hostile toward any one gender and that the atmosphere is not overtly sexual.
What Must be Proven in a Discrimination Claim?
Under the Equal Pay Act, discrimination is proven when both men and women do the same type of work in the same job and yet are given different wages. A discrimination claim may also succeed when employers in Essex County hire only one specific gender, issues promotions based on gender, or retaliates against persons who seek relief for employer misconduct.
When is Sexual Harassment Prohibited?
Sexual harassment consists of any unwanted conduct of a sexual nature directed towards the victim, and includes both physical and verbal acts. An employer in Essex County may be liable for such conduct, even when it is simply other co-workers that have engaged in harassment.
Massachusetts employers may also be liable for allowing conduct to lead to a work environment that is overly sexual. It can be difficult to prove gender discrimination without first obtaining a lawyer, since specifics such as proving intent can often be complicated. There might also be procedures that must be followed in detail when one pursues a claim.