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Anne Arundel County Passes New Anti-Discrimination Law

by | May 28, 2024 | Discrimination

On Monday, April 15th, 2024, the Anne Arundel County Council passed its first comprehensive anti-discrimination law, Bill No. 21-24. The law strengthens its Human Resources Commission, grants employees new protections from employment discrimination, and expands the mechanisms for pursuing employment and housing discrimination complaints.

The new law, which was passed with a bipartisan unanimous vote, strengthens the County’s Human Relations Commission (“HRC”) by authorizing it to investigate private employers and public accommodations anti-discrimination complaints in addition to housing violations. Further, the HRC was granted the ability to issue subpoenas along with other increased enforcement powers, including the ability to receive, mediate, and adjudicate complaints of employment and housing discrimination. The law also modified the County’s definitions of “protected class” and “gender identity or expression” to be more inclusive and prohibit discrimination on the basis of “actual or perceived age, ancestry, citizenship, color, creed, disability, familial status, gender identity or expression, marital status, national origin, occupation, race, religion (subject to the exceptions in State law), sex, sexual orientation, or source of income”. The law also broadened protections by prohibiting discrimination based on an employee’s “association” with an individual of a protected class. However, the remedies available under the law may be limited.

If you believe that you have been the victim of discrimination in the workplace and you want more information about options available to you, Gilbert Employment Law, P.C. may be able to assist. Please fill out our intake form or call us at 888-676-8096.