Though most people in Oregon and across the country need a job to meet their financial needs, it is not easy to find employment. Even if you have the education and experience necessary to qualify for a position, you could still easily not get the job. In some cases, this could happen because another candidate was a better fit for the position, but in other instances, discrimination could play a role in a prospective employer passing you over.
You may think that there is nothing you can do if you face employment discrimination during the hiring stage. However, you still have legal rights and protections during the hiring process. If you believe that discrimination played a role in someone not hiring you, you may want to thoroughly assess your circumstances to determine whether any potentially illegal actions took place.
Discriminatory questions and requirements
Discrimination can take place in the hiring process in many ways. For instance, if a potential employer puts out an advertisement looking for young applicants or applicants of a specific gender, that specification could constitute employment discrimination. In some cases, discriminatory qualifications may be less obvious, such as requiring less than 15 years of experience to prevent older individuals from applying.
It is also possible for discrimination to take place during the interview. Prospective employers who ask questions about any of the following topics may be using discriminatory hiring practices:
- Your marital status
- Whether you have children
- Your religion
- Whether you have a disability
- Your race
- Your age
- Drug or alcohol use
If you have concerns about any of the aforementioned topics, such as wanting to know about accommodations for a disability, you can bring up the topics, and the interviewer can discuss it with you. However, the interviewer should only provide information that will answer any questions you have and should not try to pry additional information from you.
It can certainly be disheartening to face discrimination in any capacity. However, if you believe that a prospective employer utilized discriminatory practices during the hiring process, you may want to remember that you have legal rights. Oregon laws and federal laws protect workers from such unfair treatment, and any employers or prospective employers covered under these laws could face legal repercussions if they unlawfully mistreat an employee or applicant.