California Civil Rights laws & HR compliance analysis

California Civil Rights: What you need to know

The California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) prohibits discrimination against applicants, employees, unpaid interns, and volunteers based on race, religious creed, color, national origin, ancestry, physical disability, mental disability, medical condition (specifically cancer-related conditions and genetic characteristics), genetic information, marital status, sex, gender, gender identity, gender expression, age (40 years and older), sexual orientation, or military and veteran status. It includes discrimination based on a perception that a person is a member of a protected class or is associated with a person who is, or is perceived to be, a member of a protected class (CA Gov. Code Sec. 12940 et seq.). An employer or employment agency is not prohibited from making age inquiries of employment applicants or specifying age limitations for employment where required by law.
Effective January 1, 2017, an individual employed under a special license in a nonprofit sheltered workshop or rehabilitation facility may bring an action under FEHA for any form of harassment or discrimination (CA Gov. Code Sec. 12926.05). An employer has an affirmative defense by proving that the challenged activity was permitted by statute or regulation andthat it was necessary to serve employees with disabilities under a special license.
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Retaliation prohibited. FEHA prohibits employers from retaliating against any person who opposes any unlawful discriminatory practice, files a discrimination claim, or assists in the investigation or hearing of a discrimination claim. Effective January 1, 2016, FEHA expressly prohibits employers from retaliating against a person because he or she requests an ...

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