Gender Discrimination

Gender discrimination can take many forms. Common types of gender discrimination include sexual harassment, pregnancy discrimination, and unequal treatment in conditions and terms of employment. Although women are most often the victims of gender discrimination, the law equally protects men as well as both men and women from gender-based stereotypes

As gender discrimination lawyers, we accept cases of discrimination from both men and women.  Our firm is committed to ending illegal discriminatory practices in all areas of the workforce.

What Types of Gender Discrimination are Prohibited Under the Law?

State and federal law prohibit discrimination on the basis of gender. Various laws protect against unequal pay, discriminatory treatment, and bias against pregnant employees. In general, it is only permissible to make an employment decision based on gender, or a gender-specific characteristic such as pregnancy, when being a specific gender is a bona fide occupational qualification for the position. Thus, for example, it may be permissible for an agency to hire only women as nurses at a halfway house for young women, though not necessarily so. These are rare exceptions and must be based on compelling evidence, not stereotypes or assumptions.

It is strictly impermissible to make employment decisions based on stereotypes of women or men.

Gender Discrimination and Unequal Pay

The statistics and evidence showing women being underpaid compared to men is voluminous.  The fact is, paying a woman less than a man for the same work is wrong and illegal.

We are available to demand action and fair pay in these circumstances.  Give us a call to tell us about your case and find out if we can help.

Can Men Sue for Gender Discrimination?

Yes, gender discrimination laws apply to both women and men.

Historically, some occupations have been staffed almost exclusively by women.  Nurses and elementary school teachers fall into this category.  For instance, according to a 2017 study, only 2.3% of the elementary and kindergarten teachers are men.[1]   Just as women are discriminated against in certain professions, men can also be discriminated against in other professions.  So, if a man is not hired or is discriminated against in the workplace because of his gender, he would also be entitled to bring a gender discrimination lawsuit.

Pregnancy Discrimination

Discriminating against a woman in the workplace because she is pregnant, or may become pregnant, is strictly prohibited.  Companies may not, for example, ask a woman if she is going to be starting a family, or if she intends to return to the workforce after having a baby.

While pregnancy discrimination is illegal, there are many companies that try to circumvent the law.  For instance, if a woman becomes pregnant, an employer may move her to “less important” client accounts, or otherwise try to make her feel that her opportunities for growth at the company are limited.  In reality, what they would like to do is to make conditions so difficult at work that the woman will choose not to return to work after having her baby.

The Rights of Pregnant Women

In Massachusetts, pregnant women must be accommodated to the extent that it is reasonable to do even without any doctor’s orders for routine pregnancy-related accommodations such as increased rests, minor lifting-restrictions, and a private area for pumping breast-milk . An employer may require a doctor’s note for other non-routine accommodations.

If You Have Been the Victim of Gender Discrimination, Please Call Us

We offer a free phone consultation so that you can tell us about your case and we can determine if we may be able to help.


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