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Monday, November 21, 2022

NJ LGBTQ Rights Attorney, LGBTQ and Gender Non-Conforming Employees Hide Relationships

Even today in 2022, many LGBTQ, non-binary, non-cisgender, gender non-conforming employees fearing discrimination in their workplace, keep their relationships private. A recent comprehensive study by a collaboration of independent and non-partisan research groups found that LGBTQ individuals fear potential discrimination due to their gender identity and/or sexual orientation and choose to hold back on disclosing their relationship status to others within their workplace.

Although the survey found that discrimination events occurred frequently in public places and in some in educational facilities and rental housing, a whopping 36 percent of the discrimination reported was in the workplace. Among transgendered individuals, the reported discrimination increased dramatically to over 60 percent.

Older generations, Generation X and Baby-boomers reported the most occurrences of discrimination overall occurred in the workplace, while Generation Z reported most discrimination took place in educational facilities. Over 70 percent of LGBTQ respondents reported LGBTQ discrimination in the prior year, and over 50% reported not disclosing a personal relationship for fear of discrimination. Over 50 percent reported their LGBTQ status caused them to make a decision about where to work to avoid discrimination, and among transgendered individuals, over 60 percent reported making decisions about where to work to avoid discrimination.

The New Jersey Law Against Discrimination (NJLAD) protects all persons from discrimination in employment, based on their LGBTQ status and it has a broad definition of “homosexuality” as to protected workers.

Under the NJLAD, it is unlawful to discriminate against a person seeking employment or one who is employed because of his/her sex, gender, affectional or sexual orientation, with respect to any term, condition, or privilege of employment including hiring, training job assignments, awarding promotions, monetary compensation and benefits, determining layoffs and terminations.

The New Jersey Law Statute (NJLAD) Has a Broad Definition of “Homosexuality” as to Protected Workers.

NJ’s broad definition of “homosexuality’” gives legal protection to many persons who otherwise would not be covered under the legal protective umbrella of the NJLAD. The statute states that:

“Homosexuality means affectional, emotional, or physical attraction or behavior which is primarily directed towards persons of the same gender.”

The NJLAD specifically stipulates that all NJ workers have a right to employment without discrimination because of affectional or sexual orientation, sex, gender identity or expression as well as some other protected classes.

The NJLAD broadly defines these related protected classes of NJ workers as follows:

Affectional or sexual orientation” means male or female heterosexuality, homosexuality, or bisexuality by inclination, practice, identity, or expression, having a history thereof or being perceived, presumed, or identified by others as having such an orientation.

Heterosexuality” means affectional, emotional, or physical attraction or behavior which is primarily directed towards persons of the other gender.

Bisexuality” means affectional, emotional, or physical attraction or behavior which is directed towards persons of either gender.

Gender identity or expression” means having or being perceived as having a gender related identity or expression whether or not stereotypically associated with a person’s assigned sex at birth.

Employees sometimes erroneously believe they have no legal recourse when they are being harassed for being a member of a protected class if they are not in fact in that class, i.e., being perceived as being gay if they are not gay. This is not true. In New Jersey, employment harassment or discrimination based on a perception of that a person as a homosexual is illegal, even when the victimized person is not homosexual. In places of employment and in school law, a perception of homosexuality is as covered a class receiving legal protection from discrimination as is actual homosexuality.

If you are experience discrimination at work because of your LGBTQ, non-binary, non-cisgender status, or perceived status, you may call this office today for a free consultation. I have represented numerous non-binary and gender non-conforming employees, including high level managers, and was successful in recovering monetary compensation for their pain and suffering and lost wages.

IF YOU ARE THINKING OF QUITTING

If you quit your job because of discrimination or harassment, you may lose your right to file a claim unless you take certain steps while you are still employed. I cannot stress this enough.

If you are thinking of quitting or handing in a resignation letter, before you do so, you should call this office today for a free consultation to explore your legal options in the safest way for you. We accept cases from all 21 counties in NJ and bring claims against private and public employers. We have locations in central, southern and central NJ to meet with clients.

Don’t sit on your rights!

If you believe your employer is discriminating against you because you are a member of a protected class such as sexual orientation, age, sex, race, disability etc., you should contact this office immediately.

I am an aggressive and compassionate employment law attorney who is experienced in successfully representing persons who were subjected to discrimination, harassment and retaliation in the workplace and/or were fired. If you have experienced discrimination at work, or if you reported it and no action was taken, if you are thinking of resigning, or think you will be fired, or have been fired, it is important that you consult with an attorney who is experienced in employment discrimination.

Hope A. Lang, Attorney at Law represents workers throughout the entire state, including Hackensack, Jersey City, Newark, Irvington, Orange, East Orange, Trenton, Paterson, Montclair, Elizabeth, North Brunswick, Union, Plainfield, Lakewood, Edison and in every county including Bergen, Middlesex, Essex, Hudson, Monmouth, Ocean, Union, Camden, Passaic, and Morris.

Hope A. Lang, Attorney at Law has convenient locations in Southern, Central, Western and Northern NJ to meet with clients.


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