As the tech industry booms in the Bay Area, some workers might be asking themselves who is really benefiting from the boom. A recent publication on the lack of diversity at Google shows that the tech boom is mostly rewarding young, white males. The lack of diversity in Silicon Valley fuels biases that may be contributing to an unfair work environment for women, minorities and older workers.
Discrimination in employment can sometimes be subtle. It can come in the form of lower pay raises than other employees, stricter scrutiny of your work, and/or denial of benefits that other employees enjoy, such as promotions, working from home, and inclusion in upper level meetings. Other times it can be blatant, such as Mark Zuckerberg's statement that "young people are just smarter."
Women especially face difficulty in the workplace, particularly in the male dominated tech industry. Sex discrimination can come in the form of being left out of meetings, a bad performance review, or denial of a promotion. It also appears when women are judged based on their appearance or willingness to succumb to sexual advances. In addition, women (and men) have the right to take family leaves and can not be penalized at work for doing so.
If you think you may be the victim of discrimination at work a qualified employment attorney can help you evaluate whether you have a case and what actions are available to you.
How do you choose an employment attorney?
Choosing the best employment attorney might seem overwhelming but it doesn't need to be if you are properly prepared. Here are some questions to ask of any prospective employment attorney to help guide you in your search.
Do you offer free consultations? Gwilliam, Ivary, Chiosso, Cavalli & Brewer is just one of the many Bay Area employment law firms that offers free consultations with prospective clients.
Do you accept cases on a contingency fee basis? The best professional employment attorneys-including Gwilliam, Ivary, Chiosso, Cavalli & Brewer- will work for you on a contingency basis. That means that the attorneys will only be compensated if a judgment is won or settlements are reached.
Where do you practice? When it comes to choosing an employment attorney, closer is not always better. Working with a highly regarded and experienced employment attorney is more valuable than having one who is close by.
How do you approach your work? Try to understand what you might gain from working with a particular employment attorney. For example, at Gwilliam, Ivary, Chiosso, Cavalli & Brewer, we view our clients as individuals and fellow human beings. We try to help our clients in ways that sometimes have little or nothing to do with their immediate legal needs, such as referring them to medical professionals or grief counselors. Ultimately, we seek justice for our clients so that we can improve the quality of their lives. In medicine, this is known as the "holistic" approach. In the practice of law, it has just as much value.