Protections Against National Origin Discrimination in California

June 6, 2018

The California Office of Administrative Law recently approved amendments to the Fair Employment and Housing Act (“FEHA”), the California law that protects employees from illegal discrimination and harassment. Though the FEHA already protects employees from discrimination on the basis of national origin, the recent amendments broaden the definition of the term to include an individual’s – or individual’s ancestors’ – actual or perceived:

  • Physical, cultural or linguistic characteristics associated with a national origin group;
  • Marriage to or association with persons of a national origin group;
  • Tribal affiliation;
  • Membership in or association with an organization identified with or seeking to promote the interests of a national origin group;
  • Attendance or participation in schools, churches, temples, mosques or other religious institutions generally used by persons of a national origin group; or
  • Name that is associated with a national origin group.

The amendments go into effect July 1, 2018.

Additional information on the law can be found here.

If you have any questions, please email

The proceeding information is provided for informational purposes only, should not be construed as or relied upon as legal advice and is subject to change without notice. If you have questions concerning particular situations, specific payroll administration or labor relations issues, please contact your counsel.

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