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Unruh Act Not a Bar to Suit Over Threatened Violence


The California Supreme Court previously held that the Unruh Act, which prohibits discrimination by businesses, does not apply to employment cases. (Rojo v. Kliger(1990) 52 Cal.3d 65). The California Appellate Court in Stamps v. Superior Court recently decided that claims previously believed barred by Rojo can be brought by disgruntled employees. Many people assumed that Civ. Code, § § 51.7 and 52.1, which prohibit discriminatory violence and intimidation and against denial of civil rights by means of threats and intimidation were part of the Unruh Act. The Stamps court clarified the issue and held that Civ. Code, § § 51.7, and 52.1 were not part of the Unruh act. Employees can sue their employers for threats of violence or intimidation on the basis of their race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, political affiliation, sex, sexual orientation, age, disability or position in a labor dispute, or for exercising any constitutional right.

The Law Office of Phillip J. Griego
95 South Market Street, Suite 520
San Jose, CA 95113
Tel. 408-293-6341
Original article by Robert E. Nuddleman, a former associate of The Law Office of Phillip J. Griego.

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Phillip J. Griego represents employees and businesses throughout Silicon Valley and the greater San Francisco Bay Area including Palo Alto, Menlo Park, Mountain View, Los Altos, San Jose, the South Bay Area, Campbell, Los Gatos, Cupertino, Morgan Hill, Gilroy, Sunnyvale, Santa Cruz, Saratoga, and Alameda, San Mateo, Santa Clara, San Benito, Mendocino, and Calaveras counties.