If my boss made a racial remark today that made me feel really uncomfortable, is there any legal action that I can take?

He was talking about Yom Kipor coming up and how we can’t contact Jewish customers. He went on to say we have a lot of jewish customers and they are all cheap. I am Jewish and it made me very uncomfortable.

Asked on September 24, 2012 under Employment Labor Law, Colorado

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Racial and religious discrimination or harassment (note: anti-Jewish conduct would mostly be considered religous discrimination)--including making negative remarks about an employee's religious group--in employment are prohibited by law. The amount that an employee injured by such harassment could recover in such a lawsuit, however, is limited to the extent of the damage suffered by the employee; thus, for example, a one-time remark, unaccompanied by any negative employment action (i.e. not accompanied by demotion, being paid less than non-Jews, etc.) is unlikely to support a sufficient award of compensation to justify the cost and effort of a lawsuit. Therefore, while you may wish to report this remark to the federal EEOC or the state equal/civil rights division, it is most likely not worth retaining an attorney and bringing your own suit.


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