Intentional discrimination in the workplace is prohibited by Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and state anti-discrimination laws. In order to succeed in a discrimination claim, you and your Orange County employment lawyer will have to show the employer’s discriminatory motive in the adverse employment action. The easiest way to prove this is by obtaining direct evidence.
According to the courts, direct evidence is “evidence which, if believed, proves the facts of [discriminatory animus] without inference or presumption.” This means that it the evidence is so clear that it is not necessary to take the further step of making a conjecture or assumption about discriminatory intent. An example of direct evidence is when an employer explicitly states that the employer was demoted because of she belonged to a protected class. Even absent an express statement by the employer, a discriminatory employment policy will suffice to constitute direct evidence. In one particular case, a company’s president issued a memorandum that stated a preference for hiring young men who were between the ages of 30 and 40; a court held that this amounted to direct evidence of discrimination.
Another example of direct evidence of discriminatory intent is when the employer either makes degrading comments or stereotypes the protected class that the employee belongs in. For example, there is direct evidence of discrimination if an employer calls a Mexican-American as a “dumb Mexican.”
Direct evidence is extremely difficult to find. Don’t get discouraged if you are unable to procure direct evidence of discrimination; your Orange County employment lawyer can also use circumstantial evidence to prove your case.
Do not hesitate to contact experienced Orange County employment lawyer Reed Aljian today for a free initial consultation.