Has your employer treated you unfairly, denied you a promotion, or fired you based on your race? We do not stand for race discrimination or employment discrimination of any kind. We fight to hold employers responsible when they fail to treat all applicants and employees with dignity and respect.
Our Harrisburg employment discrimination lawyers have a long history of standing up for workers’ rights. We bring more than 120 years of collective legal experience to your fight for justice.
We’ve been recognized by numerous respected organizations, such as:
- Super Lawyers
- U.S. News & World Report (Best Law Firms)
- Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum
- National Trial Lawyers
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How Marzzacco Niven & Associates Can Help With a Race Discrimination Claim
When you hire our Harrisburg employment discrimination attorneys to handle your race discrimination claim, we’ll:
- Conduct a thorough, independent investigation into your employer’s discriminatory practices
- Advise you of all legal options under various employment laws
- Interview witnesses, obtain documents from human resources, such as manuals, performance evaluations, and payroll records
- Calculate your damages to include all direct and collateral consequences you suffered because of discrimination
- Handle all communications and negotiations with your employer’s lawyers
- Protect you from retaliation from your employer
- Fight for you in court, if necessary
We know employment law in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, inside and out. We do what it takes to protect your rights, hold your employer accountable, and pave the way for you to confidently move on with your career. We offer free initial consultations, so call now for help.
What Is Race Discrimination?
In its simplest terms, race discrimination is treating someone differently and unfavorably because of their race. In an employment context, race discrimination is when an employer treats an employee negatively – intentionally or unintentionally – because of their race or skin color.
Although it is a common term, race is nonetheless a complicated one; it is not always defined in the laws prohibiting race discrimination.
According to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), race discrimination includes discrimination on the basis of ancestry or physical or cultural characteristics associated with a certain race, such as skin color, hair texture or styles, or certain facial features.
Forms of Race Discrimination
At its worst, discrimination can be blatant and overt. But often, race discrimination is subtle and deeply rooted in institutional practices. You will want an experienced attorney who is familiar with employment discrimination laws to handle your case, as these cases are usually very complicated and hard-fought by employers.
Disparate treatment occurs when an employer intentionally treats similarly situated employees differently because of their race.
This may be through the employer’s overall policies or individual actions.
Of course, you are not likely to find an explicitly discriminatory policy in any employer’s handbook. Investigating the employer’s hiring practices, as well as salaries, promotions, benefits, and terminations are some factors that are critical to proving a disparate treatment claim.
Disparate impact occurs when an employer’s policies or practices appear neutral but negatively affect a protected class in practice, even when applied equally to all employees. It is not necessary to prove discriminatory intent in a disparate impact claim.
The policy may be discriminatory, for example, if there is a non-discriminatory alternative that the employer has refused to adopt, and that would have non-discriminatory effects.
Hostile Work Environment
A hostile work environment based on racial bias occurs even if an employee is not subject to a disadvantage in pay, promotion opportunities, or other benefits.
Harassment in the form of racial slurs, derogatory comments, or exclusion can be contributing factors to a hostile work environment.
What Laws Prohibit Race Discrimination?
Several state and federal laws protect against racial discrimination:
- Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964: This federal law prohibits various forms of discrimination based on race, color, sex, national origin, or religion. Title VII claims are initiated through the EEOC.
- 42 U.S.C. § 1981 (Section 1981): This federal statute is based on Section 1 of the 1866 Civil Rights Act and prohibits intentional discrimination in the application of laws by private, federal, or state entities.
- The Pennsylvania Human Relations Act (PHRA) prohibits discrimination based on race, color, religious creed, ancestry, age, or national origin for issues related to housing, employment, education, public accommodations, and commercial property.
Race discrimination claims often involve violations of multiple state and federal laws. This may affect your deadline for filing a claim and what compensation you could receive. You want an employment lawyer who specifically has experience in race discrimination claims to handle your case.
What Damages Are Available for Race Discrimination Claims?
If you are the victim of race discrimination, there are several remedies available to you, depending on the circumstances of your case.
Examples of damages include:
- Back pay to make up for lost wages and benefits when you were passed over for a promotion
- Placing you in the job that you should have received if not for discrimination
- Out-of-pocket expenses for job searches
- Attorney fees
- Compensation for therapy, anxiety, or depression caused by discrimination
- Punitive damages, in some cases
Each case is unique, and the damages available to you will depend on how the discrimination affected you. We make sure you understand your options and your goals for the resolution of your case.
Get Help with a Race Discrimination Claim
If you have been denied a job or promotion or have otherwise been discriminated against in the workplace, let our experienced employment advocates fight for your rights.
The Harrisburg injury lawyers at Marzzacco Niven & Associates stand up tall against unethical and illegal practices. We will help you fight for the compensation you deserve for being denied your full earning potential. And, we’ll hold employers accountable for failing to treat you with dignity, respect, and fairness.
We offer free and confidential consultations, so call today to see how we can help.