Facing discrimination can be disheartening and frustrating. Sometimes you know something’s wrong, but you can’t put your finger on it. Tens of thousands of people may feel the same way every year, and there are a few common causes that rise to the top.

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) resolved over 90,000 cases of discrimination in the workplace in 2018, the most recently reported year. Discrimination can come in a variety of ways, in a range of circumstances, but it is often illegal under federal law. Knowing the most common forms of discrimination may help you identify if you have a claim.

Concerning distinctions

Discrimination can take many forms, but there are a few components that make up the most frequent allegations:

  • Reactive actions: 6% of all charges filed shared a theme of retaliation. If an employer fires you for reporting wrongdoing, filing an accusation or taking part in an investigation, then that will fall under retaliation.
  • Protected classes: The Civil Rights act of 1964 spells out the law prohibiting discrimination when it comes to your sex and race, which make up 32.2% of cases apiece, and your age, which accounts for 22.1%. This law also includes matters about your national origin, skin color and religion.
  • Redressing disability: An employer can’t discriminate if you now or ever have had an impairment thanks to the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 for federal matters. Even if the distinction takes place wrongfully, the intent to discriminate can still apply. This makes up 32.3% of cases the EEOC oversaw.

You’re entitled to protections against mistreatment in the workplace. Make sure you understand what behavior violates the law, and you could be well on your way to mounting a discrimination claim.