The rules address scheduling, age, and other factors
California’s Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) recently set forth new regulations (rules) that govern certain aspects of employment in California. These rules address issues such as when independent contractors should be classified as employees (under AB5), and expansion of paid family leave. They also expand anti-discrimination laws when it comes to how employers can advertise for jobs.
As a California workplace discrimination attorney can explain, the California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) forbids workplace discrimination and harassment based on membership in a protected class. This law is more expansive than federal anti-discrimination laws and apply to a broader range of people. Under both the FEHA and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, employees are protected from discrimination based on their:
- Race (both)
- Color (both)
- National origin (both)
- Religion (both)
- Sex (both, and Title VII includes sexual orientation and gender identity under a recent Supreme Court ruling)
- Age (both)
- Disability (both)
- Sexual orientation (FEHA)
- Gender identity and gender expression (FEHA)
- Medical condition (FEHA)
- Genetic information (FEHA)
- Marital status (FEHA)
- Military or veteran status (FEHA)
As a California workplace discrimination attorney can explain, the new regulations impose stricter limitations on job advertising, recruitment, and the interview process, particularly as it relates to age, disability, medical status, and/or religion. Specifically, advertisements cannot include:
- A maximum experience limitation
- Require that candidates maintain an email associated with a college
- Cannot use terms such as “young,” “recent college graduate” or other terms that may imply a preference for candidates under the age of 40.
In addition, information related to a job applicant’s schedule or availability cannot be used to determine whether the applicant practices a particular religion or has a disability or medical condition. When asking about availability, employers must use language that assures applicants that time off for reasons related to religion, disability, or medical conditions are not a factor in the hiring process.
These new regulations are important, as they address a subtle way that employers may intentionally or unintentionally discriminate against job candidates. If an ad requests applicants with no more than 10 years of experience, for example, then older people may be less likely to apply. Similarly, if an interviewer asks a lot of questions about scheduling and availability, it may indicate that the employer isn’t willing to hire someone who may need time off to go to a religious service or for medical treatment.
Anti-discrimination laws serve to protect both existing employees and job applicants. In other words, if you experience discrimination when applying for a job, that may be grounds for a legal claim against that company. A California workplace discrimination attorney can work with you and help you determine if you are able to file a lawsuit against your current employer or prospective employer based on discrimination.
At PLBSH, we are dedicated to achieving justice for all employees. We work hard to help our clients achieve the best possible outcome for their cases. To learn more or to schedule a consultation, contact us today at (800) 435-7542 or firstname.lastname@example.org.