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 must also make sure that working environments will not be hostile towards a certain gender and that the work atmosphere is not overly sexual.
What Must be Proven in a Discrimination Claim?
Under the Equal Pay act, discrimination can be proven if men and women both work in the same place, do the same job, but are nevertheless paid differently. Discrimination claims in South Hadley can be proven where the employer only hires one gender, promotes employees on the basis of gender, or acts in retaliation against a worker who has complained of 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 South Hadley could also potentially be held liable for inappropriate behavior that was conducted by an employee's co-worker.
Massachusetts employers who allow conduct to produce an overly sexual work atmosphere might also be held liable for sexual harassment. Gender discrimination is usually difficult to prove without a lawyer because the specifics of proving intent can be complicated. There are also detailed procedures that must be followed when pursuing a claim.