Gender Discrimination

Gender discrimination happens when your boss uses your gender to make an employment decision about you. You can be discriminated against whether you are a man or a woman and whether your boss is a man or a woman. Federal law also makes it illegal for employers to pay women less than men for the same work. Gender discrimination laws also forbids sexual harassment.

Federal law does not allow companies with more than15employees to discriminate based on the gender of a job applicant or employee. New York State and New York City Laws do not allowsex discrimination by employers with 4 or more employees. New York City’s law specifically forbids discrimination against transgender people.

You have to look at the actions of your employer to figure out if you were a victim of gender discrimination. Here are a few examples of gender discrimination by an employer:

  • After getting outstanding reviews, you learn that your annual raise is much less than the raises that members of the opposite sex received;
  • You are looking for a job and see a job you want, but the advertisement says that the company will only interview the opposite sex;
  • In a job interview, the employer asks female job applicants whether they are married, have children or are planning to have children, but doesn’t ask male applicants the same questions;
  • Women in your workplace are always passed over for promotions. These promotions are given to less-qualified and less senior male employees;
  • Your employer assigns the most important accounts or clients to workers of the opposite sex;
  • You and other employees of your gender are routinely left out of important meetings, preferred assignments or valuable benefits, such as overtime shifts.

Legal Editor: Megan Goddard, January 2015 (updated May 2017)

Changes may occur in this area of law. The information provided is brought to you as a public service with the help and assistance of volunteer legal editors, and is intended to help you better understand the law in general. It is not intended to be legal advice regarding your particular problem or to substitute for the advice of a lawyer.

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