Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 protects individuals against employment discrimination on the basis of sex. Title VII applies to employers with 15 or more employees, including state and local governments. New York State's anti-discrimination law, however, imposes no minimum employee requirement.
It is unlawful to discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment because of his/her sex in regard to hiring, termination, promotion, compensation, job training, or any other term, condition, or privilege of employment. Title VII also prohibits employment decisions based on stereotypes and assumptions about abilities, traits, or the performance of individuals on the basis of sex. Title VII prohibits both intentional discrimination and neutral job policies that disproportionately exclude individuals on the basis of sex and that are not job related.
Title VII's prohibitions against sex-based discrimination also cover sexual harassment. This includes practices ranging from quid pro quo sexual harassment - requests for sexual favors in exchange for favorable treatment - to conditions that create a hostile environment for persons of either gender, including same sex harassment. Title VII was amended by the Pregnancy Discrimination Act, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of pregnancy, childbirth and related medical conditions. Title VII also prohibits compensation discrimination on the basis of sex. Unlike the Equal Pay Act, Title VII does not require that your job be substantially equal to that of a person of the opposite sex.
It is also unlawful to retaliate against an individual for opposing employment practices that discriminate based on sex or for filing a discrimination charge, testifying, or participating in any way in an investigation, proceeding, or litigation under Title VII.