Do employers need to protect you from discriminatory customers?

On Behalf of | Apr 17, 2023 | Blog, Employment Discrimination |

Discrimination in the workplace often takes the form of employee peers or an authority figure such as a manager engaging in bad behavior. With the right proof or evidence, you can claim someone at your work is liable for discrimination. However, what happens when you experience discrimination from a customer? Is it a workplace problem or a civil case between you and the customer?

It depends on whether your employer allows it to happen to a certain extent. Knowing the details may help you determine what kind of case pursues the fairest outcome.

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act

The Civil Rights Act prohibits employment discrimination based on a number of personal factors:

  • Race
  • Color
  • Religion
  • Sex
  • National origin

Many interpret this as hiring practices, but it applies to facilitating a nondiscriminatory workplace as well. Customers impact your workplace depending on your career. A cosmetologist may meet dozens of people per day, each with their own views.

Reasonable corrective action

If employers know about employee discrimination on the part of a customer, there may be options they can pursue. This includes deescalating the situation, making sure a worker is safe by assigning them tasks away from the incident or even punishing the customer with a future ban. If they unreasonably fail to take this corrective action, they may be liable for third-party harassment.

If you feel that an employer cultivates a discriminatory workplace by not curbing customer discrimination, you have options to seek damages. In these situations, it is important to learn more about your unique case to reach the fairest outcome.

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