The Montana Human Rights Act prohibits discrimination in employment on the basis of race, creed, religion, color, national origin, age, physical or mental disability, marital status, or sex (including maternity and pregnancy). Unless a bona fide occupational qualification (BFOQ) applies, the Act specifically prohibits employers from using employment applications, statements, advertisements, or publications that express an unlawful discriminatory preference, limitation, or specification. The law applies to all employers (MT Code Sec. 49-2-101 et seq.).
A separate provision of the Act prohibits discrimination because of an individual's political beliefs. The provision applies to all state employers (MT Code Sec. 49-2-308).
BFOQ exception. A BFOQ may be based on an applicant's sex, marital status, age, physical or mental disability, race, creed, religion, color, or national origin. These exceptions are strictly construed under state law, and employers should be cautious when relying on a BFOQ to make employment decisions that may have a discriminatory effect.