Harassment is unwelcome conduct that is based on race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy), national origin, age (40 or older), disability or genetic information. Harassment becomes unlawful where 1) enduring the offensive conduct becomes a condition of continued employment, or 2) the conduct is severe or pervasive enough to create a work environment that a reasonable person would consider intimidating, hostile, or abusive.
Anti-discrimination laws also prohibit harassment against individuals in retaliation for filing a discrimination charge, testifying, or participating in any way in an investigation, proceeding, or lawsuit under these laws; or opposing employment practices that they reasonably believe discriminate against individuals, in violation of these laws.
The Equal Pay Act requires that men and women in the same workplace be given equal pay for equal work. The jobs need not be identical, but they must be substantially equal. Job content (not job titles) determines whether jobs are substantially equal.
Laws prohibit punishing job applicants or employees for asserting their rights to be free from employment discrimination including harassment. Asserting your rights is called “protected activity,” and it can take many forms. For example, it is unlawful to retaliate against applicants or employees for
(1) filing or being a witness in a charge, complaint, investigation, or lawsuit,
(2) communicating with a supervisor or manager about employment discrimination, including harassment,
(3) resisting sexual advances, or intervening to protect others
(4) requesting accommodation of a disability or for a religious practice, or
(5) asking managers or co-workers about salary information to uncover potentially discriminatory wages.