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Have a Legal Question?
When you work for a company, you expect to be treated fairly. You might not always get everything that you want, but you should always expect to be treated with respect and courtesy. When the people around you are treated differently than you, though, your workplace becomes less safe for you – and less safe for the community around you. Unfortunately, some companies feel like they can discriminate based on anything they like – including the marital status of their employees. Doing so is not just immoral, but is contrary to the laws that have been put in place to protect employees.
You cannot be discriminated against because of your marriage. It doesn’t matter the reasoning that your company gives you, nor the lies they hide behind. They may tell you that they only hire people without family commitments, or that they prefer to hire “stable” individuals. What they’re really trying to do is dictate the way that their employees live, and they are breaking the law. Unfortunately, many companies get away with such actions because their employees don’t understand their rights. No one has the right to hire, fire, or treat you differently based on your marital status in the United States.
You should always be careful to document anything said to you that’s based on your marital status, as this can become important to your future. You’re not just looking at whether you were hired or fired – promotions, time off, and even treatment within the office should not depend on whether or not you have a spouse. This should be a private matter for you, not one that your company exploits to make decisions.
If you are discriminated against because of your marital status, your first move should always be to contact an attorney. There is no excuse that can help a company if it is truly making decisions based on whether or not its employees are married, and you don’t deserve to have your livelihood threatened based on that fact. Employees deserve a certain level of respect and dignity, and that means that a company should never be able to dictate the marital status of the people who it chooses to employ.