How To Report Racial Discrimination

In today’s world, society has come a long way in terms of racial discrimination. Now more than ever, people are given opportunities in education, careers, and other areas no matter their race or ethnicity. However, that does not mean discrimination never occurs. Whether being denied admission to a specific college or university or being turned down for a job or promotion, racial discrimination still happens. When it does, it is important to not sit back and do nothing. For those who believe they have been discriminated against due to race, there are a variety of legal options available to them. If you fall into this category, make sure you contact a racial discrimination attorney from can ymployment Lawyers to discuss your situation in greater detail.

What is Considered Racial Discrimination?
According to racial discrimination law, this type of discrimination can take many forms. For example, it can include negative comments made while on the job or in a job interview, off-color jokes meant to offend, or pictures posted on bulletin boards or shared online that are racially insensitive. Whatever the case may be, it is important to not only recognize these incidents for what they are, but to also take appropriate steps to ensure they do not occur again and keep you from getting the opportunities you deserve. In these situations, it is best to immediately speak with a racial discrimination lawyer to have your situation evaluated and decide how best to proceed.

Office of Civil Rights
If you have been discriminated against on the job, while attempting to be hired for a job, or perhaps while attending a college or university, you have the right to contact the U.S. Office of Civil Rights. Since Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits discrimination due to race, color, or national origin, this can be a critical step in making sure you get the opportunities you deserve. In most cases, your complaint must be filed with the OCR within 180 days from the last act of discrimination against you. But before filing a complaint with OCR, it is usually recommended you investigate and attempt to exhaust all options available through your company’s grievance process. If this is done and a complaint still needs to be filed with OCR, it must be done within 60 days of completing the grievance process.

Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
While you can pursue a complaint of racial discrimination through the U.S. Office of Civil Rights, most of these situations are handled by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, since the vast majority of racial discrimination law violations happen in the workplace. By filing a complaint with the EEOC, the agency will not only have the authority needed to conduct an investigation into the matter, but also settle a case or file a lawsuit on your behalf.

Filing a Charge of Discrimination
Once you decide to proceed with a complaint of racial discrimination through the EEOC, your first step will be to file a Charge of Discrimination. But before doing so, it is recommended you submit an online inquiry to the agency and speak to an agency representative about your allegations. While the EEOC representative can advise you on how to proceed, you have the legal right to file a complaint no matter what type of advice you receive from the EEOC. Due to the many complexities that can be involved in filing these charges, always make sure you are working closely with a racial discrimination lawyer who has experience handling these cases. If you decide to proceed, your charge must be filed within 180 days of the last discriminatory act, or 300 days if your state has additional laws prohibiting this form of discrimination.

What Happens After the Charge is Filed?
Once your charges have been filed, the EEOC will notify your employer and prepare to conduct an investigation. But first, the agency may attempt to mediate the situation in hope of reaching a voluntary settlement, which would take far less time than an investigation or lawsuit. However, if mediation fails or is considered to not be an appropriate option based on the charges, an investigation will proceed. In most cases, the employer is required to respond to the allegations within 30 days. Once they have done so, you will have 20 days to provide your own response.

How Long Do Investigations Take?
On average, an EEOC investigation takes 10 months from start to finish. This includes agency representatives interviewing you, your employer, and anyone with knowledge of the alleged discriminatory acts. In addition, large amounts of documents and other evidence will need to be gathered and assessed by the EEOC. Along the way, you have the right to amend your charges should any new acts of discrimination occur. While an investigation is proceeding, always make sure you are obtaining legal advice from a racial discrimination attorney who possesses in-depth knowledge of these situations.

Right to Sue Letter
After the EEOC completes its investigation, you will receive a Right to Sue Letter. This letter will contain the results of the agency’s investigation, and will be crucial to helping you decide how to proceed. In the letter, the agency will either state the law has or has not been violated, or will be unable to make a clear determination either way. But no matter the outcome of the EEOC investigation, you still have the right to pursue a racial discrimination lawsuit. While the EEOC has the authority to file a lawsuit on your behalf, it rarely does except in extreme circumstances. Thus, should you decide to pursue litigation, you have 90 days from the date you received your letter to file a lawsuit.

Filing the Lawsuit
Once you are prepared to file a lawsuit against your employer for racial discrimination, be ready to work very closely with your attorney at West Coast Employment Lawyers. Since these cases are very complex and multi-dimensional in nature, your attorney will need to gather various types of evidence to help prove your case. These usually include emails, text messages, and voice mails showing discrimination occurred, employment records from the employer that may show a history of discrimination, performance evaluations showing you have been deserving of a promotion for which you have been denied, and many other documents that may be relevant to your case. Along with this, your attorney will interview your employer and any witnesses to the alleged discrimination, so have patience while the process plays out.

Don’t Procrastinate
Since these matters can sometimes be embarrassing and frustrating, many people who are victims of racial discrimination procrastinate about whether or not to take legal action against their employer. However, this is usually a mistake. Remember that if you have received a Right to Sue Letter from the EEOC, you only have 90 days to file a lawsuit. Therefore, it is best to immediately contact a racial discrimination attorney from West Coast Employment Lawyers for a consultation. By doing so, you will be taking the first step in holding those who denied you the opportunities you deserve accountable for their actions. Therefore, hire a racial discrimination lawyer and make sure racial discrimination law is used in your favor.

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