How to Recognize Discrimination in the Workplace

Discrimination can be difficult to determine.
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Discrimination can happen to anyone, no matter where they work and it can be based on gender, age, disability or other factors. These types of discrimination in the workplace are illegal. Sometimes it's hard to tell if you have been discriminated against while applying for a job or a promotion within your company. Keep some key identifiers in mind when trying to determine if you have been discriminated against in the workplace.

    Step 1

    Familiarize yourself with your co-workers and their job duties. Take note if any are being treated unfairly when others in the same position are given more respect.

    Step 2

    Be aware of any workers who don't fit the stereotype. For example, are managers less likely to assign important projects to workers based on sexual preference or race?

    Step 3

    Take notes of any potential discrimination that you see occurring in the workplace. If you see a co-worker or manager belittling a worker because of her race, gender, sexual preference or disability, be sure to write down exactly what happened, where it happened, and the date and time of day.

    Step 4

    Pay attention when special projects are given to those in your office. Take note if certain groups of people are given these special tasks while others are excluded.

    Step 5

    Report to higher management any worker or manager if you hear them making derogatory remarks against others. Workers do not deserve to be treated unfairly in the workplace and it may be against the law.

    Step 6

    Report workers who make racist remarks or jokes about other co-workers. Reports should be made in a timely manner with the names of the people involved and where the incident occurred.

    Step 7

    Be aware if you see any potential employees being turned away from a job position based on race, gender, disability or sexual preference. These types of offenses could be punishable by law. Report this type of discrimination to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.


    • It is illegal in the United States for an employer to discriminate against a person based on race, sexual preference, religion, national origin or color.


    • Validate your claim of discrimination before contacting the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Never make false claims of discrimination against an employer out of spite.

    Things You'll Need

    • Paper

    • Pen

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