The Maryland Fair Employment Practices Act prohibits all employers from discriminating in employment on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, age, national origin, marital status, sexual orientation, genetic information, or disability unrelated to reasonable performance of the job, or because of the individual's refusal to submit to a genetic test or make available the results of a genetic test (MD State Govt. Code Sec. 20-601 et seq.).
In addition, employers are prohibited from printing or publishing any job notice or advertisement indicating a discriminatory preference, limitation, or specification, unless the stated characteristic is a bona fide occupational qualification (BFOQ). The BFOQ exception applies only to religion, sex, age, national origin, or disability. There is no BFOQ exception for race, color, or sexual orientation. In general, courts have been extremely reluctant to sanction otherwise discriminatory practices on BFOQ grounds.
The Act applies to all public employers and to private employers that have employed at least 15 employees during each working day for 20 or more calendar weeks in the current or prior year