1. TITLE VII OF THE CIVIL RIGHTS ACT OF 1964 (as amended)
This was one of the first laws designed to fight discrimination. This law made it illegal for employers to deny anyone a job on the bases of race, color, religion, sex age, sexual identity or national origin. It also prohibited discrimination in firing, promotion, training and other privileges of employment. The Act was amended in 1972 by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission to extend coverage to federal employees. It was again amended in 1991 to include the right for complainants to have a jury trial and to obtain compensatory damages.
2. AGE DISCRIMINATION IN EMPLOYMENT ACT (ADEA)
This law was passed in 1967 and specifically prohibited discrimination in employment based on age (40 years or older). The ADEA also allows a person alleging age discrimination to have the option to either: (1) seek resolution through the EEO complaint process; or, (2) file a civil action in district court. If the EEO Complaint process is elected, all administrative remedies must be exhausted before a complainant can file a suit in US District Court.
3. EQUAL PAY ACT (EPA)
This law was enacted in 1963. It prohibited different rates of pay for men and women doing similar work provided that there would be equal pay for similar work (similar effort, similar skill, similar responsibility, and similar working conditions).
4. REHABILITATION ACT (as amended)
The "Rehab" Act was enacted in 1973. It prohibits discrimination due to a physical or mental disability. It further requires agencies to make reasonable accommodations for known physical or mental limitations of a qualified disabled applicant or employee, with some exceptions. For further information about disability, reasonable accommodation and the Rehabilitation Act, see Diversity Team.