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Reverse sexual orientation discrimination claims are possible

New Jersey employees may be interested in learning that reverse sexual orientation discrimination claims, though rare, are still being filed. In fact, these claims may become more commonplace if the courts interpret the federal laws that prohibit sexual orientation discrimination more broadly.

One example of a dispute that went to court involved a Los Angeles drug treatment facility. A heterosexual female employee claimed that the director treated gay workers better than the heterosexual ones. She claimed that her work schedule was changed so that it conflicted with her schooling. However, she was working towards becoming certified as an abuse counselor, meaning she had to continue taking classes while staying employed. In late December 2016, a judge agreed that the case could go to trial.

Employers should take claims of sexual orientation and reverse sexual orientation seriously. However, employers and employees should also be careful and ensure that bias is not confused with others socializing with like-minded people. An attorney stated that some people combat the stereotypes surrounding their sexual orientation by associating with each other, networking and going to LGBT events together. This behavior should not be confused as evidence of favoritism.

Workplace discrimination can cause cause employees to become less productive or even miss out on other work-related opportunities. If employees have evidence that they are being discriminated against for their sexual orientation, gender or age, they may have the grounds to file a discrimination claim against their employer. An attorney may assist with the gathering of evidence that demonstrates that the employee was treated differently based on his or her gender or sexual orientation. Evidence can potentially include scheduling conflicts that cause the employee to fail, poor reviews after a history of good performance reviews and being skipped over for a promotion for which he or she was more than qualified.

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