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San Francisco Employment Law Blog

Have I been sexually harassed at work?

Many people that are being sexually harassed at work feel that if they take action, they will be judged as making a big deal out of nothing. They might think that their boss needs to have attempted to have sex with them in order for it to constitute sexual harassment. However, it is important for all sexual harassment victims to know that this is not the case.

Sexual harassment can be extremely damaging to a person's well-being even if it is considered by others to be something subtle such as name calling or unwanted looks.

Could pregnancy affect my career?

Equality at work is extremely important, and it is a right that we all have. It is forbidden for an employer to treat a woman any differently because she is pregnant, is anticipating pregnancy or has children. However, the sad fact is that statistics show that pregnancy and motherhood negatively affect a woman's career both in the short and long term.

What do studies say about the treatment of women when pregnant?

What to do when a coworker says something offensive

Everything can be going perfectly at work, when suddenly a coworker says something that stops you in your tracks. The comment might be blatantly sexist or racist, or it might be harder to tell exactly why it makes you uncomfortable - but you know it does. How do you respond? 

What is the Family Sick Leave Law in California?

The Family Sick Leave Law was introduced in 2000, and gives employees the right to take paid sick leave in order to care for a sick family member, most typically their child.

It requires that every employer who offers paid sick leave to his or her employees must allow them to use up to 50 percent of their yearly sick leave for these purposes without question.

Taking appropriate action against sexual harassment

Unfortunately is extremely common for people both in professional and personal contexts to be subject to unwelcome sexual advances. This could be in subtle forms, such as unwelcome compliments in the office, or in much more unsettling ways, such as a manager attempting to engage in sexual activity.

It's very common for a person to feel ashamed or embarrassed by sexual harassment, and therefore, reluctant to come forward and take action. Similarly, many people feel as though they may be making a big fuss out of nothing. If they were affected by the act, then this is simply not the case.

Dealing with a comment that offends you at work

When working in any office environment, it is likely that you will come across a time that you are offended by a comment made; either about you or a general statement about a religion, race, sex or nationality. Going through an experience like this can make you feel deeply offended and troubled by the environment that you work in. At the same time, you might feel worried about making a complaint about such an event, fearing retaliation.

When you are faced with a situation like this, you should first of all consider the situation in context. Was it a statement that revealed a deeper issue such as racial hatred that you think needs to be addressed? You should consider what the cost of not speaking up could be. Perhaps ignoring a troubling situation could be indirectly permitting discriminatory behavior.

Common questions on your employment rights

As an employee, there are so many rules and regulations that might leave you confused in regard to what your rights are. The following blog provides a brief overview into some of the most common questions that are asked by employees about issues regarding what happens after you have left the company, and what to do if you believe you have been wrongfully terminated.

Can I get a reference from my employer even if I have been fired?

Are you a victim of subtle disability discrimination?

If you are a California worker with a qualifying physical or mental disability, you have many different laws on your side. You are protected in certain important ways by the Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA), the California Family Rights Act (CFRA), the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) and other laws.

However, just because something is written into law doesn’t automatically mean that every company is aware of it or will abide by it. Here are a few questions to ask to learn whether you may possibly be a victim of subtle disability discrimination:

How does California function as an at-will state?

Like many other states in the country, California laws state that employers can fire their staff "at-will". In other words, they can fire one of their employees without needing to give a reason. But many people think that if a state has "at-will" laws, then they as employees do not have any rights or opportunity for legal action when they have been fired. This could not be further from the truth.

What is wrongful termination?

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