What is hiring discrimination?

Nobody wants to receive a rejection letter from his or her prospective employer. This rejection may be illegal if an applicant believes that they experienced discrimination. With this post, you can learn to recognize the signs of hiring discrimination and understand your next steps.

What qualifies as hiring discrimination?

Discrimination happens when an employer refuses to hire a worker for illegal reasons. You may not have a claim if an employer refused to hire you because of problems with your education or work history.

Employers may not discriminate against potential employees for many reasons, including:

  • Religion: Employers cannot refuse to hire someone because of their religion, religious practices or clothing unless these beliefs would cause undue hardship. For example, an employer cannot turn away a Sikh applicant for having a long beard or hair.
  • Age: Workers over the age of 40 have protection from age discrimination. An employer cannot refuse to hire someone because of their age if they meet all other job requirements.
  • Race: Racial discrimination occurs an employer refuses to hire a worker because of racial characteristics, such as skin color, hair texture or facial features. Applicants who have a spouse of a specific race or color can also experience racial discrimination.

Discrimination can happen anywhere in the hiring process, including in job advertisements, recruiting tactics and applications. Hiring discrimination rules only apply to businesses who have 15 or more employees for at least twenty calendar weeks.

What options are available for victims of hiring discrimination?

Job applicants who experience discrimination can file a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and the Arizona Attorney General's Office. Applicants should also consider speaking to an employment attorney. A lawyer can check an employer's hiring practices and guide you your case.

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