Thursday, March 13, 2014

What’s in the GINA for an Employee Like You?

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What does genetic information has to do with your job? This is the question that a lot of people have been asking given that the Title II of the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA) of 2008 has been made to protect the same. And so we will discuss the things that every employee needs to know about genetic information and why it matters to you and every employee in California and all over the country.


What is “Genetic Information” and what’s in it for you?

One’s genetic information includes some important things about one person. It includes one’s family medical history, information about one person or family member’s genetic tests. These tests include the possibility of an individual’s increased risk of developing sicknesses like cancer, even records of visits by one’s family member to get genetic counseling or being a part of clinical research works for genetic testing. Now with this providing a lot of information about you and your family, would you feel okay if somebody else is looking for and checking it out?


Why Is the GINA Needed in the Workplace?

Some employers use any sort of information they could have to make employment decisions. One of those is one’s genetic information which is not at all relevant to gauge a person’s ability to work. And so employees are barred from doing the following:

-          Get an employee’s genetic information,

-          Offer a genetic services to an employee, or

-          Acquire genetic information from “commercially and publicly available” sources.

And so, an employer should keep any genetic information that it does acquire about one applicant or employee confidential.


What To Do If Your Rights Under the GINA Are Violated?

You can ask for the help of an employment law attorney in Los Angeles to prepare and file a claim against the employer. Filing such claims should be made within 180 days of the alleged violation. This way, you will be able to get reinstated to your work and be compensated for the pain and suffering that such violation has done to you and your family members.


There are some things that you would rather not know about. However, the protection of your genetic information from use and abuse of some employers is very important for your safety as well. That is why you should protect this vital information about you to prevent being used and abused by some unscrupulous employers.