A protected characteristic is something like your gender, your national origin, the color of your skin, your religion, whether you have a disability or your employer perceives you to have a disability. Pregnancy is covered. So, there are a myriad of characteristics that have certain protections under the law, some under one which is called Title VII, which covers a whole wide spectrum of characteristics. Then, there are individual statutes, such as the Americans With Disabilities Act, that cover disabilities and things of that nature. There’s a whole myriad of things that you are protected against in the event that an employer takes an action for some illegal reason.

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