The act of discrimination is considered a crime in US and in many other countries. Discrimination may happen to anyone, based on their race, gender, sexual preference, religion, age, nationality, and disability. It also affects many aspects of a person's life, from his education up to employment, even retirement. Federal anti-discrimination laws penalize the person proven guilty of discriminatory practices.

  • Age Discrimination Act of 1975: This law prohibits age discrimination in programs or activities that provide any type of federal financial assistance (e.g. financial assistance of the Department of Education to schools and colleges).
  • Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990: Titles I and V of ADA make discrimination towards people with disabilities – including those who are related to them – on all aspects of employment illegal. It protects people who have a history of disability, and those who are perceived as having a disability. The law applies to employers with 15 or more employees including the local government and its agencies, employment agencies, and labor unions.
  • Civil Rights Act of 1964 and 1991: Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act made retaliation and employment discrimination based on protected characteristics like race, color, religion, sex, or national origin unlawful. It also prohibits apparent neutral practices that have negative impact on a group of people, unless the practice has a valid reason behind it. The 1991 Civil Rights Act, meanwhile, provides monetary damages when discrimination is intentional.
  • Employment Non-Discrimination Act: This proposed bill is still in Congress. Once passed, it will prohibit employment discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity for civilian non-religious employees. This will be applied to employers with more than 15 employees.
  • Fair Labor Standards Act: Otherwise known as Wages and Hours Bill, this law established a national minimum wage and overtime pays to certain jobs in interstate commerce, and prohibited most employment of minors. This law has two known amendments.
    • Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967: ADEA prohibits discrimination to employees who are 40 years old, as well as retaliation to those who assert their rights under the law. Those who are over 40, meanwhile, are protected by the Older Workers Benefits Protection Act.
    • Equal Pay Act of 1963: EPA states that men and women who perform the equal amount of work which requires the same amount of skill, effort, and responsibility under similar conditions are to be paid equally too. However, the law is subject to a few exceptions.

This article is not meant to be interpreted as a legal advice. To know the available legal options regarding your case, consult an Employment Law Attorney for more information.