Teacher and School Staff Discrimination
Both federal and state law prohibit an employer from making employment decisions based upon certain prohibited criteria. The employer may not discriminate against an employee based upon race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, ancestry, material status, handicap, or unfavorable military discharge. The employer may not fail or refuse to hire individuals or otherwise discriminate against them in compensation, terms and conditions of employment, promotion, discharge, discipline, or tenure based upon any of these prohibited criteria.
Claims of discrimination can be filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and the Illinois Human Rights Commission (HRC). Under certain circumstances, claims can then be filed in either federal or state court. In order to prevail in a discrimination claim, the complainant must first prove a prima facie case. He/she must prove that he/she is a member of the protected class (e.g., racial minority), that he/she is qualified for the position in question, and that the position was denied to him/her.
The elements of the prima facie case will vary depending upon the type of discrimination involved (pay, promotion, hiring, etc.). The employer then has the opportunity to put some evidence forward of a legitimate and non-discriminatory reason for its action. Finally, the complainant has the burden of proving that the reason given by the employer was mere pretext.
As with any other case, the person who believes he or she has suffered as a result of illegal discrimination must prove the charges with evidence.
If you feel that you have a case based on discrimination, please contact us for a Free Teacher and School Staff Discrimination Consultation.