Protected Class - Meaning & Definition

Published in Human Resources Terms by MBA Skool Team

What is Protected Class?

Protected class is a group of individuals possessing some common characteristics who are safeguarded from discrimination in employment on the basis of those characteristics. Protected classes are usually created by the government of the country.

Followings are included in Protected classes:-

1. Race

2. Color

3. Religion

4. National origin

5. Age

6. Gender

7. Pregnancy

8. Citizenship

9. Familial Status

10. Disability status

11. Harassments

The first law for civil rights protected only color and race. With passing years the principle of discrimination evolved and more number of laws was passed with more number of groups getting added to the protected class lists. Color, religion, national origin, race, gender, age and disability are included in the federal protected class. While the state laws of United States of America further protects the marital status, ancestry, arrests and court records.

In order to respond and to prevent the employee discrimination based on the protected class, all the employers should have a zero tolerance against any type of discrimination. An employer must implement the policy against discrimination and confirms that all the employees and their supervisors go through the training on the policy. The organization must establish a multi-channeled grievance/complaint system and respond to all the discrimination related issues with proper investigation and then taking actions against the person found guilty. Those employees who are protected under the discrimination laws have advanced well in their careers when compared with the traditional protected classes of age, race, gender, disability, and transgender status.

The organizations must know that there might be actions and allegations of bias and discrimination by multiple plaintiffs, the organization must know how to prevent itself and effectively respond to such kind of claims. The recruiting and hiring procedures must be investigated at regular intervals in order to protect the immigrants, migrants, differently able, women, old workers, religious groups and other vulnerable workers.

Hence, this concludes the definition of Protected Class along with its overview.

This article has been researched & authored by the Business Concepts Team. It has been reviewed & published by the MBA Skool Team. The content on MBA Skool has been created for educational & academic purpose only.

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