The “Show Me” state of Missouri has long been held up as the perfect cross-section of America. Missouri’s two major cities--Kansas City and St. Louis--are balanced demographically and economically by the state’s vast rural swaths. According to a 2008 census estimate, Missouri has over 5.9 million people. Its border with the Mississippi River has made the state a powerful hub of trade, industry, and communications. Prior to the 2008 election of President Barack Obama, Missouri voters had correctly “predicted” the outcome of the U.S. Presidential race correctly all but once over the past century.
Missouri’s economy stands on diverse legs. Missouri produces tremendous amounts of soybeans, pork, chicken, diary products. Mining, tourism, communications industries, financial services, and banking industries all contribute to the state’s bottom-line.
The Missouri Department of Labor and Industrial Relations (based out of the capital, Jefferson City) oversees and enforces antidiscrimination protections. The DLIR’s mission involves advocating for both industry and labor in an impartial fashion. The DLIR deals with employment benefits, worker’s compensation, wage and hour issues, workplace safety, mine and cave safety, minimum wage issues, and training. The Department has enforcement authority, and state officers often work with members of the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) to identify trends in statewide workplace discrimination cases and offer remedies.
Missouri, like many Midwestern states that depend significantly on traditional manufacturing, has seen significant job loss during the recent recession. Some of the layoffs were surely done in “good faith” based strictly on economic realities. Other firings, however, may have been at least partially motivated by discrimination and/or retaliation.
If you lost a job due to your status as a member of a “protected class,” the attorneys at Joseph & Kirschenbaum may be able to offer solutions. Find out more about how to battle back against discrimination and retaliation today.