Workplace Discrimination Attorneys to Represent You in a Lawsuit
Laura E. Bellini is a litigator with Phillips & Associates. Like our other dedicated New York City employment discrimination lawyers, she aims to eradicate unfair, adverse treatment from the workplace. Adverse treatment is illegal when it stems from protected characteristics such as a worker’s race or sex.
Ms. Bellini graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and Journalism. She made the Dean’s List in Fall 2013, Spring 2014, Fall 2015, Fall 2016, and Spring 2017, and received the Senior Dedication Award. She served as President of Phi Sigma Sigma Sorority.
She graduated with a Juris Doctor from the Maurice A. Deane School of Law at Hofstra University in Hempstead, New York. While in law school, her interest in workers’ rights was sparked as she participated in the Hofstra Labor & Employment Law Journal. She is a Samuel M. Kaynard Fellowship Recipient and also received a Gold Level Public Service Certificate for completing more than 1000 hours of pro bono work.
Ms. Bellini participated in the Veteran’s Legal Assistance Project in 2018 and Hofstra Law in D.C. Program in 2019. She volunteered in different regions for the National Labor Relations Board, further cementing her concern for workers. In Region 5, Washington, D.C., for example, she investigated charges on behalf of the Board and presented recommendations and analyses for supervisory approval.
Prior to joining Phillip & Associates, she worked as a law clerk at a firm in New York. While there, she reviewed and analyzed complex legal documents and handled discovery matters. She also interned for a class action firm handling motion work.
Ms. Bellini is admitted to practice in New York state.
Handling Workplace Discrimination Suits
Federal, state and local laws prohibit employment discrimination and harassment in New York City. Generally, discrimination occurs when an employee is treated adversely due to his or her membership in a protected class. It can involve an employer’s adverse decisions regarding hiring, firing, layoffs, compensation, promotions, and demotions. Harassment arising out of protected characteristics is a form of discrimination under federal laws.
Various classes are protected under different antidiscrimination laws. For instance, under federal Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, you should not be discriminated against based on your race, national origin, religion, sex, or color. If your boss fired you because you revealed you were Mormon, for example, you may have a claim for religious discrimination.
Both statutory language and case law provide subtle differences in what is considered harassment under federal laws like Title VII, which is enforced by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the New York State Human Rights Law, and the New York City Human Rights Law.
Seeking Damages Under State and Local Laws
Typically, the New York City Human Rights Law provides the strongest protections for workers and allows for the greatest damages awards. Long considered one of the most liberal laws in the country, it forbids discrimination and harassment in connection with many personal characteristics not recognized by other laws in or outside of the state.
It expressly forbids discrimination based on:
- National origin
- Physical or mental disability
- Gender identity or expression
- Predisposing genetic characteristics
- Familial status
- Domestic violence victim status
- Arrest records
- Criminal convictions.
Both local and state laws protect employees of companies that are smaller. For instance, you are covered by city law if your employer had at least four people who were employed at all times during the period starting 12 months before the start of its illegal discriminatory practices and continuing through the termination of that unlawful discriminatory practice.
Consult a Dedicated Trial Lawyer
Ms. Bellini understands how difficult it is to face discrimination and harassment in the workplace. You may feel embarrassed and worried. You may not be sure whether what happened to you is actionable. You should give Ms. Bellini and the rest of our legal team a call. Unlike some other firms, the New York City employment discrimination lawyers of Phillips & Associates represent workers on a contingency fee basis and offer free consultations. We may be able to represent you in your discrimination claim against an employer in Brooklyn, Manhattan, Queens, Staten Island, the Bronx, Nassau County, or Suffolk County. Call us at (866) 229-9441 or complete our online form.