P rohibitions against employment discrimination protect individuals from unfair treatment on the job and help to ensure healthy and productive workplaces. By requiring employers to shield workers and job applicants from arbitrary and hostile treatment due to race, religion, sex, national origin, disability, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, and other characteristics protected under federal, state, and local laws, fair employment protections help create equal employment opportunity.
CIVIL RIGHTS TESTING
The ERC released a report based on a civil rights testing investigation into bias against LGBT job applicants in Virginia. Using matched pair testing, the ERC compared the experiences of straight job applicants with gay/queer job applicants during the hiring process. Results pointed to the existence of discrimination against gay/queer job applicants. The ERC conducted a total of 10 matched-pair tests at companies in Virginia and some form of discrimination was suspected in three out of 10 comprehensive tests.
In 2014, the ERC collaborated with Freedom to Work to launch a testing-based investigation to assess the extent of employment discrimination against LGBT job applicants in federal contractor hiring. Eight major federal contractors throughout the country were tested, and the investigation found that LGBT applicants were 23% less likely to receive a call-back than their non-LGBT counterpart, even when the LGBT applicant was better qualified than the non-LGBT applicant.