The government and the different workers’ rights groups have been working very hard to minimize, if not eradicate, discrimination against people in the workplace. But despite these great efforts, the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) reports that there are still a great number of recorded reports about discrimination in the workplace.

In studies done by focus groups, there have been a few common reasons why acts of abuse, harassment, and discrimination are still prevalent in the workplace and they are the following:

•    Imperfections. People’s imperfections greatly affect the way they see others, resulting in certain prejudices and abuse. These prejudices play a huge role on why some people discriminate against their colleagues at work. Some people think too high of themselves that they tend to magnify small, nonsensical things that lead to misunderstanding or disregard to fellow workers’ employment rights.

•    Fear. There are a number of people who use discrimination as their own little way of socializing. They are afraid that if they accepted people as they are or changed the way they see them, other people might poke fun at them and their views. Apparently, it is how they downplay their fear and unwillingness to open their minds and free it from hate, bigotry, and ignorance. Because of this fear, they have a great tendency of continuing to pick on others and using them as a coping mechanism for this fear.

•    Labels. From one generation to the other, the prejudices against people of other race and sexes are passed on. Because of the same, these people tend to make fun of one’s race, color, or sex. And just because others would laugh at their discriminating jokes, such people think that what they are doing is cool.

•    Generalizations. Heard about blondes being called stupid and dumb? Or the ones about Mexicans crossing the border illegally? Are all blonde women dumb? Are all Mexicans or Hispanic-looking people illegal aliens? Are Chinese or Asian people really yellow? Just because some people of a certain race or sex did something wrong doesn’t mean the stigma should rightfully stick to others of the same race or sex. It should not. Truth is, we very well know that none of these generalizations are true. Sometimes, people can’t seem to let go of such generalizations that they end up discriminating others.

How can you fight for your rights?

If you have ever been a victim of these acts of discrimination, you should stand up and fight for your rights. First, file the necessary complaint to the Human Resources Department of your company. If that doesn’t work, you can also ask the help of the EEOC for it to help you prepare and file a complaint against your aggressors. You might also want to consult a good Los Angeles labor lawyer to give you great insights about the best legal move to do.

Is there a way for these acts of discrimination to end?

Actually, there is. Letting go of the fear, prejudice, labels, and wrong generalizations we have against other people can help put an end to discrimination and make the workplace a happy place. Opening one’s mind may be difficult, but it can nevertheless be done.