Among severely obese people, about 28 percent of men and 45 percent of women said they have experienced discrimination because of their weight. . .
Institutional discrimination involved health care, education or workplace situations, such as cases in which people said they were fired, denied a job or a promotion because of their weight. Interpersonal discrimination focused on insults, abuse and harassment from others.
Lynn McAfee, director of medical advocacy at the non-profit Council on Size and Weight Discrimination in Mt. Marion, N.Y., is not surprised by the findings. "Until we clean up language like 'war on obesity' and have authorities speak out about it, discrimination will continue to increase," she says. . .
No federal laws against weight discrimination exist, although some cities, including Washington, D.C., and San Francisco, have banned discrimination locally. The Massachusetts Legislature had hearings last month on a proposed law.