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What are examples of genetic information?

On Behalf of | Feb 25, 2022 | Workplace Discrimination

In addition to workplace discrimination according to race, gender, age, and disability, some employers engage in genetic discrimination. This is when an employer decides to fire you or not hire you in the first place because your genetic information shows that you might be at risk for developing a health problem later in life.

The EEOC explains that federal law restricts the disclosure of genetic information. The law forbids your employer from requesting or requiring your genetic information. Given how easy it is for sensitive information to leak through electronic mediums, you might want to know what qualifies as genetic information so you may protect it.

Family medical history

The medical history of your family tells you the kinds of illnesses and conditions your ancestors experienced. This helps you to understand if you are at risk for diabetes, heart disease and various cancers. It may also tell you if your children are at risk for developing specific health problems. Knowing your family history may let you take proactive steps to guard your health and the health of your children.

Genetic tests

Information taken from genetic testing also qualifies as genetic information. A recent genetic test may let you know if you are at risk of developing an illness or a disorder. People undergo examinations of their chromosomes, genes and proteins so they can better understand their future health and whether their children are at risk for health problems.

Genetic services

You may be a part of a clinical research trial or you might use assisted reproductive technology to create an embryo. Information derived from these and other genetic services serves as a form of genetic information. Additionally, you can protect genetic service information from your family members or any embryos you have created.

Genetic discrimination is a serious matter, and not only because it is a form of workplace discrimination. If your employer has your genetic information, someone may have breached your confidential medical information. As a result, you may have multiple grievances to seek justice for.


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