Is It Illegal For My Boss To Exclude Me From Work Events?

People experiencing discrimination in the workplace are often isolated in a way that makes it difficult to understand exactly how they are being disadvantaged. Being excluded from workplace events and activities is a perfect example of this subtle discrimination.  

If you are repeatedly denied the opportunity to attend certain work or social events both in and out of the office, you may feel ostracized. Even worse, you may be passed over for promotions, bonuses, and raises because you lack the same access to supervisors as other employees. When an individual is excluded from a work-related activities on the basis of their race, age, sex, disability, or other protected class, this is a form of discrimination and can be illegal.  

What common types of work activities are employees illegally excluded from? 

There are many common forms of exclusion in the workplace. Exclusion can mean being left of out activities or work events. If you are repeatedly left out of work meetings, important videoconferences, or even social events, this can be illegal exclusion if it affects your ability to do your job or get ahead in the workplace. Illegal discrimination can be a repeated pattern of exclusion. In extreme cases, it can even be demonstrated in by a single event or interaction.  

This kind of exclusion can have lasting impacts on an individual’s career by leaving people out of key networking opportunities or chances for advancement in the workplace. If the reason for this exclusion is the employee’s membership in a protected class, he or she may have a claim for workplace discrimination.  

Do you need to prove your boss intended to discriminate? 

If you are excluded because of your membership in a protected class, you may have a claim for discrimination even if the exclusion is unintentional. This is because corporate practices can be illegal if they have the practical effect of disadvantaging members of a protected class. For example, if women are not invited on a golf trip with the CEO, it may disadvantage women in promotions and hurt their career path–even if the CEO does not intend to discriminate but just wants a trip with his male “buddies.” Another example could be scheduling an important meeting or event during a team member’s religious holiday, excluding the team member based on his religious identity, even if it was unintentional.  

You can prove discrimination if you have evidence that your career suffered due to exclusion based on your membership in a protected class, or that you were fired for complaining that you were being excluded for discriminatory reasons.  

Talk to an Experienced Employment Discrimination Lawyer 

At King & Siegel LLP, we are passionate about fighting social injustice in the workplace. You should never have to face discrimination because of your race, sexual orientation, religious identity, or gender. 

Need legal help? We provide free, confidential consultations to California workers. You should contact us as soon as possible to make sure your claim is still within the time limits set by law. If you have experienced discrimination or your employer has wrongfully denied you sick leave, contact us today through our website or give us a call at (213) 214-3757 to schedule a free consultation.

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