Employment Discrimination in Mississippi

Avoid employment discrimination against protected classes in Mississippi.

Updated by , J.D. · University of Missouri School of Law

What are the protected classes in Mississippi?

In all 50 states, federal law makes it illegal to discriminate based on:

  • race
  • color
  • national origin
  • religion
  • sex (including pregnancy, childbirth, and related medical conditions)
  • sexual orientation
  • gender identity
  • disability
  • age (40 and older)
  • citizenship status
  • genetic information

In addition, Mississippi state law also prohibits discrimination based on military status. Mississippi has no other protected categories unless the employer receives public funding.

Equal Pay for Equal Work Act

Effective July 1, 2022, Mississippi's Equal Pay for Equal Work Act protects full-time employees from pay discrimination based on sex. The law covers employers with at least five employees.

Individuals who wish to take action under this law can file a lawsuit in the circuit court in the county where the discrimination occurred.

How many employees must a company in Mississippi have to be subject to antidiscrimination laws?

Under federal law, companies with 15 or more employees are covered by Title VII, the primary law prohibiting employment discrimination, the Americans with Disabilities Act, and the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act.

Companies with 20 or more employees are subject to the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), the federal law that prohibits discrimination against employees 40 years or older.

Companies with four or more employees must comply with the employment discrimination provisions of the Immigration Reform and Control Act, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of citizenship status. And all companies of any size must pay men and women equally for doing equal work, by virtue of the Equal Pay Act and Mississippi's equal pay law.

In Mississippi, companies with one or more employees are subject to the state's antidiscrimination law.

What government agency regulates workplace discrimination in Mississippi?

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is the federal agency that regulates workplace discrimination. You can contact the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission by calling 800-669-4000 or check out its website. The website will help you locate an EEOC field office in Mississippi.

The Department of Employment Security enforces state antidiscrimination law in Mississippi. You can contact the Department of Employment Security at 601-321-6000 or go to its website.

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