The Nebraska Fair Employment Practice Act prohibits employment practices that discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, disability, marital status, or national origin (Neb. Rev. Stat. § 48-1101 et seq.). A separate law prohibits practices that discriminate on the basis of age (Neb. Rev. Stat. § 48-1001 et seq.). As a general rule, applicants should not be asked about any of these characteristics, either on an application form or in a job interview, unless there is a bona fide occupational qualification (BFOQ).
The term “race” includes characteristics such as skin color, hair texture, and protective hairstyles. Protective hairstyles include braids, locks, and twists (Neb. Rev. Stat. § 48-1102).
Retaliation prohibited. Employers are also prohibited from retaliating against an applicant or employee who has:
• Opposed an unlawful employment practice
• Made a charge, testified, assisted, or participated in any manner in an investigation, proceeding, or hearing under state fair employment law
• Opposed any practice or refused to carry out any action that is unlawful under federal law or state law
The fair employment law covers employers with 15 or more employees. The age discrimination law covers employers with 20 or more employees.
Disabilities. State law specifically provides that an employer may not ask whether an applicant has a disability or about the nature or severity of the disability. Applicants may be asked only whether they are able to perform the duties of the job in question (Neb. Rev. Stat. § 48-1107.02).
Acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) policy. Nebraska's AIDS Discrimination Act prohibits employment discrimination against people who have or are suspected to have a human ...