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What is one thing that affects almost everyone? Jobs. Unless you are very fortunate or unfortunate, at some point you will likely have a job. Most commonly than not you will be employed by someone else. The guidelines about what employers can and can’t do are very complicated and are changing all the time, But one thing they are not allowed to do is discriminate against certain groups of people. Probably the greatest group protected by discrimination is women. Gender Discrimination shares one thing in common with other discriminations; they are unchangeable. Current ideas about gender make the characterization more tricky than the supreme court likes to think, but the supreme court justices were not always the most broad minded. Another tricky situation is religion, since we are free to adopt or discard religion as we want. Since religion is mentioned in the first amendment and when the court decided on its categories, religion seemed more common than it is now. That is why religion will cause the court to take a closer look. The courts main reasoning was that racial, religious, and ethnic groups are almost always seen as minorities; and women statistically are not. Majority groups have a good chance of winning in the legislative process, thus they do not need the same protection as minority groups, as seen by the supreme court.Still even with there non minority numbers, women have still historically been treated unequally to men and given the inferior status. Because of this a law or government action aimed at women will cause the court to look more carefully but less carefully when religious, ethnic or racial minorities are mentioned. The fourteenth amendment guarantees equal protection of the law but most of the actual rules against discrimination come out of the civil rights act of 1964 and various state anti-discrimination statutes. It outlawed against race, religion, ethnicity, and gender in a bunch of situations involving public accommodations, transportation, and most important employment. More common cases of gender discrimination are those where nobody who is a member of a minority group or women gets promoted or members of those groups are disproportionately fired. This is called a disparate impact and if this happens, new court procedures kick in. If the business employer is able to show that he was forced by business necessity to fire a great percentage of group then burden shifts again back to the plaintiff to show that the employers reasons are untrue. That they are just pretext and the action was really taken because the employees were in a protected group. Much of the evidence needed to support this would likely be statistical and it may be hard to get, which points out a crucial thing about discrimination claims. Women are protected against adverse employment actions by federal and state legislation, but they are also protected against sexual harassment in the workplace. There are two types of sexual harassment, Quid pro quo and a hostile workplace. Quid pro quo harassment is when an employer promises or withholds workplace benefits like promotions in exchange for sexual favors. Hostile work environment is the result of other employees creating and friendly workplace.In the case of burlington vs. Ellerth, Kim Ellerth was subject to numerous unwanted advances from her supervisor. In one of her conversations with the supervisor, he denied her request on a relatively inconsequential business matter, but added “are you wearing shorter skirts yet kim, because that would make your job a lot easier”. In the end Ellerth won her suit against Burlington.Women do get some special treatment under the law, a reflection of the fact that they have historically been, and continue to be singled out for mistreatment. The laws and courts have been recognized, which is why women receive legal protections from discrimination. Fortunately women have increased presence in the workplace and power as voters. It wasn’t until 1963 The Equal Pay Act is passed by Congress, promising equitable wages for the same work, regardless of the race, color, religion, national origin or gender of the worker. Hopefully as time progresses women and minority groups will no longer be discriminated. Even recently women such as Hillary Clinton are trying to break through the social stigma and continue to progress equality for women of any race, religion or ethnic background.

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