Employers in Maine are prohibited from discriminating against employees on the basis of gender under the Civil Rights Act of 1963 and the Equal Pay Act. Consequently employers cannot use sex or gender as a basis for determinations regarding wages, hiring procedures, or promotion policies. They must also ensure that the workplace environment is not hostile to a particular gender and that it is not overly sexual.
What Must be Proven in a Discrimination Claim?
Discrimination occurs according to the Equal Pay Act if both men and women are working in the same job and performing the same tasks, yet receive different wages. Employers in Harpswell will also be held liable in a discrimination claim if their hiring and promotion policies favor one gender, or if the they take retaliatory action against a worker who files a complaint against their employer.
When is Sexual Harassment Prohibited?
Any unwelcome sexual behavior directed at the victim, including physical or verbal acts, is considered to be sexual harassment. An employer in Harpswell may be liable for such conduct, even when it is simply other co-workers that have engaged in harassment.
Maine employers who allow conduct to produce an overly sexual work atmosphere might also be held liable for sexual harassment. The specific details for proving intent to discrimination can be complicated, and so gender discrimination might be difficult to prove without an attorney. The procedures for filing can also be complex.