Madonna Isaac is a paralegal and legal assistant to the knowledgeable New York City employment discrimination attorneys at Phillips & Associates. She has five years of legal experience and 12 years of administrative experience offering effective and comprehensive support. She received a diploma in legal studies from Institute of Legal Executives of London, and she has a long-standing interest in the law. Prior to joining Phillips & Associates, she served as a paralegal and office assistant at several different firms in Port of Spain, Trinidad, and then at a different firm in New York City.
Ms. Isaac is committed to workers' cases. She understands that many New York employers do not meet the legal requirements of providing a workplace that is free from discrimination. Many fail to comply with wage and hour and overtime laws. Often, workers are afraid to complain, worrying that they may be fired for confronting an employer about its lack of compliance.
Most anti-discrimination and wage and hour laws prohibit retaliation. Retaliation includes any adverse action taken to punish someone for exercising their rights. In the employment context, it may include terminating an employee, refusing to promote them, failing to provide a bonus, or otherwise penalizing the employee.
Federal, state, and local laws prohibit workplace discrimination on the basis of certain protected characteristics. For example, Title VII is a federal law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of national origin, sex, race, color, and religion. It applies to employers that employ 15 or more employees.
Many federal anti-discrimination laws require you to file a charge with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission before suing your employer for discrimination, harassment, or retaliation. The EEOC may investigate. However, it may not successfully uncover a violation. You should not give up. In many cases, it is important to have a lawyer on your side during the process of bringing a charge, as well as filing a lawsuit.
There are New York and New York City laws that may protect employees of smaller businesses and provide expansive and explicit protections for certain groups not protected by federal law. For example, the New York City Human Rights Law is one of the strongest laws in the country that protects the rights of gender non-conforming and transgender employees. This law is enforced by the New York City Human Rights Commission. Moreover, individuals may also file a claim in court under this law.
There are many different ways that employers may violate the New York City Human Rights Law with regard to employees who have non-conforming gender identity and expression. Some examples include repeatedly failing to use an employee's preferred name or pronoun, refusing to permit the worker to use a single-sex facility or participate in a program consistent with their gender identity, enforcing grooming standards that impose different requirements based on sex, and failing to provide reasonable accommodations when an individual is undergoing gender transition, if reasonable accommodations are given to other employees. When an employer discriminates against you, you may entitled to lost wages, compensatory damages, punitive damages and attorney’s fees. There is no cap on compensatory damages under the New York City Human Rights Law.
Ms. Isaac is committed to workers' rights and will provide dedicated service to aggrieved workers with discrimination, harassment, retaliation, wage and hour, and other employment claims.