Walnut Creek Weight Discrimination Lawyer
The majority of people in the United States struggle with their weight, and more than one-third of the country’s population is considered obese. Despite these statistics, weight discrimination is still not recognized as a protected class, but that does not mean that you are out of options if facing discriminatory and harassing behavior from others at work. Call or contact the Walnut Creek weight discrimination lawyers at Venardi Zurada, LLP today to learn more about your legal options.
Weight Discrimination in the Workplace
Despite broad laws protecting employees belonging to certain protected classes or having protected characteristics, there is no state law in California or federal law that protects employees from discrimination based on their weight, body mass, or body type. Discrimination in the workplace occurs when an employer engages in an adverse employment action, such as refusing to hire, refusing to accommodate, or wrongfully terminating an employee or applicant based on their actual or perceived belonging to a protected class.
However, there are some situations in which an employer might be liable for discrimination if they adversely affect a person’s employment based on their weight. For example, if an employee has a disability that results in obesity, such as a genetic disorder, heart disease, or diabetes, an employer may be liable under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) for discriminating against that employee in the workplace. The EEOC has also defined severe obesity as a disability and has stated that an employer is not allowed to discriminate against an employee for being severely obese.
San Francisco Weight Discrimination Law
San Francisco is one of the few municipalities in California that has enacted their own laws against weight and size discrimination. Under the city code, an employer is not allowed to discriminate against an employee or applicant based on their weight in any aspect of employment. In addition, an employer is required to provide reasonable accommodations to people of different sizes in the workplace so long as it does not create an undue burden. Lastly, the law prohibits any harassment of an employee because of their weight, which includes unsolicited comments, advice, or literature that recommends weight loss.
Other Protections in the Workplace
In addition to discrimination, employees may be subjected to harassment while at work related to their weight. If this harassment rises to the level of a hostile work environment, they may have a claim against their employer. A hostile work environment requires harassment that is so severe or pervasive that it alters an employee’s working conditions and creates an abusive environment. An attorney can advise whether you have a discrimination or harassment claim based on the facts of your case.
Talk to Venardi Zurada, LLP Now
Have you faced discriminatory behavior or harassment at work because of your weight? You are not alone, and you may have legal options. Call the office or contact our Walnut Creek weight discrimination lawyers at Venardi Zurada, LLP now to speak with one of our skilled employment law attorneys and schedule a consultation of your case today.