The New York State Assembly took a strong stance against gender discrimination on June 2nd when they passed an important amendment to the New York State Human Rights Law. In Bill A7189/S3, plaintiffs who prove “gender discrimination in employment, housing, or the provision of credit can recover attorney’s fees.” The state senate passed it in January of this year.
At present, victims of sex discrimination are expected to pay all fees incurred over the course of their lawsuits, even after they have won their cases. This financial burden makes it very difficult for victims to seek damages, and as a result the cycle of discrimination continues.
Ryan Finn, attorney at E Stewart Jones Hacker Murphy said, “This bill is a great first step toward strengthening New York’s anti-discrimination and retaliation laws. Although [it] only covers gender discrimination and sexual harassment, it is expected that similar proposals will be passed to cover discrimination against all protected groups.”
Many non-for-profit groups throughout New York State realize the societal changes toward gender equality that Bill A7189/S3 would produce. Some strong advocates include the National Employment Lawyers Association (NELA), the Women’s Equality Coalition, and Family Planning Advocates of NY (FPANY).
With the senate and assembly’s unanimous support, the only benefactor left is Governor Cuomo. His Women’s Equality Act of 2014 and long-time civil rights activism makes him a likely supporter of this crucial bill.
If you believe you have been a victim of discrimination, contact us immediately to schedule a free, no obligation consultation with one of our experienced attorneys. We offer convenient locations in Albany, Troy, Schenectady, and Saratoga Springs, NY.