Federal and state law prohibit Virginia employers from discriminating against employees based on certain characteristics, such as race or religion. (To learn more, see our page on employment discrimination and harassment.)
In all 50 states, federal law makes it illegal to discriminate based on:
In addition, Virginia state law also prohibits discrimination based on:
Federal antidiscrimination laws apply to Virginia employers with 15 or more employees, with the following exceptions:
Virginia's governor signed the Virginia Values Act in 2020, which generally prohibits discrimination in any aspect of employment and applies to employers with 15 or more employees.
However, for claims for termination based on any characteristic except for age, the law applies to employers with more than five employees.
For termination claims based on age, the statute covers employers with between six and 19 workers.
In Virginia, you have two options for filing a complaint of workplace discrimination. You can file a complaint with either:
In Virginia, you have 300 days from the date of the most recent incident of discrimination to file a charge with the EEOC or state agency for claims based on race, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, transgender status, religion, genetic information, or disability.
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 at www.eeoc.gov. The website will help you locate an EEOC field office in Virginia.
The Virginia Office of Civil Rights enforces state antidiscrimination laws. You can contact the office by phone at (804)786-2071 or visit its website.