Do companies have to have a certain ratio of males and females in management?

UPDATED: Jan 14, 2011

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Do companies have to have a certain ratio of males and females in management?

I have worked for this company for years. I have a college degree and work very hard. I have been trying to get promoted to assistant manager for a long time. They keep promoting men and passing me up. To make it worse these men do not know how to do the job. I have to show them how to complete paper work and other tasks around the store. There is no reason for them to be in that position and not me. I feel that I am being discriminated for being a woman. It would be different if other women were promoted in front of me, but its always men.

Asked on January 14, 2011 under Employment Labor Law, Tennessee


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 12 years ago | Contributor

Companies are NOT allowed to discriminate on the basis of gender. There is no specific "ratio" or quota for women in management--indeed, if there was, that itself would gender-based discrimination--but the point is, a company may not treat one employee worse, or another better, solely on account of his or her gender. A company may, of course, not promote someone, or promote someone else for many non-discriminatory reasons--better results, more experienced, better credentals, well-liked by a major client, etc.--and not every time a woman is passed over (or a given woman never advanced) does that represent discrmination; but the company can't base the decision of sex. The determination of whether a given situation represents gender-based discrimination is therefore very fact specific. If you suspect that you may have been discrminated against, you should consult with an employment attorney who can help you make this determination. Good luck.

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