Examples of Workplace Retaliation
The company for which John works requires employees to work long hours and to put in extra time on the weekends. However, management knows that people have needs and lives outside of work and tries to accommodate those who request time off at least two weeks in advance. In most cases, management gives days off based on who requested them first.
John does not know why, but management usually overlooks his requests even when he is the first to ask for a day off. John suspects that he does not get his requests answered because he is a Muslim, but management says it’s only a coincidence and dismisses his claim. When management posted the new schedule the following week, John noticed that he is set to work even more than before, and his supervisor has required him to work overtime on the days he wanted off to be with his family.
In the following weeks, management moves John to a position that offers lower pay. Even though John did not prove his original claim of harassment, management gave him different treatment not long after he voiced his concern. If the employer cannot come up with a legitimate good faith reason for its actions, John has a strong case for a workplace retaliation lawsuit.
OSHA Whistleblower Protection Laws
Not only does the law protect those who speak out against discrimination, but it also safeguards people who report safety violations to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, or OSHA. Employees have a legal right to work in a place that is free of hazards. Whistleblowers can seek help by contacting OSHA.
No matter if you speak with your boss, human resources or a government agency about your concerns, the law is on your side. You can reach out to OSHA if you think your manager is retaliating because you tried to make your work environment safer for everyone. As far as OSHA protection is concerned, you have 30 days after the alleged harassment to report the issue.
Workplace Retaliation Statistics
Victims of retaliation and discrimination often feel alone in their struggle because they don’t know the facts, but looking at the statistics can disprove the myth. In 1997, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission received 80,680 complaints of harassment or discrimination, but the number jumped to more than 90,000 by 2016. Since a lot of cases remain unreported, these statistics might not represent the actual number of people who have experienced discrimination in the workplace.
How To Properly Respond
When you face workplace retaliation and want to seek justice, taking the right steps will boost your odds of success. You can begin by bringing the issue to the attention of your manager’s immediate supervisor, and this act could solve the issue.
If the problem persists or gets worse than before, your next step is to contact your human resources department so that it can attempt to find a peaceful resolution. Despite your best efforts, you won’t always be able to stop or prevent harassment or retaliation, but nobody should work under such conditions. Contacting a lawyer is a wise move when all of your other options have failed.
How to Prove Your Complaint
Proving your case can seem like an uphill battle when you are facing retaliation, but you can try several things to make the process easier. Your first goal is to collect as much evidence as you can to prevent your management team from making excuses and covering their tracks. If you can do so, take pictures of your schedule and daily assignments before reporting discrimination to your manager or anyone else. If your manager changes your schedule after you file the report, take pictures of it for comparison.
You will want to note the dates, times and witnesses of each retaliation incident if you would like to build a solid case. Rather than just speaking with management or human resources about your concerns, you can write a report and request a copy. Since you will want to create a paper trail, send email copies of your complaint to your company, showing that you are taking every possible step to solving the issue peacefully. A workplace retaliation lawyer can help you with all of these steps.
Why You Need a Workplace Retaliation Lawyer
Although this guide has given you a strong foundation from which to start, it won’t be enough if you would like to optimize your odds of success. No guide or book can compare to the training, experience, and education of a knowledgeable legal expert.
Your workplace retaliation lawyer will review the details of your case and help you craft the best possible strategy. Your lawyer can look at the emails you send and make corrections that will maximize your effectiveness. With a legal professional by your side, you will know what steps to take and won’t need to worry about selecting the wrong path.
You can turn to the team at the Lipinsky Law Firm if you are looking for legal experts who will have your back at each part of the process. When you come to us for guidance, we will learn about you, your needs and your desired outcome so that we can craft an approach that is unique to your situation.
Our team consists of passionate individuals who care about the needs of each client who walks through our doors for advice or legal representation, and we take pride in offering them impressive results. Since we give free consultations, you have nothing to lose and everything to gain by reaching out to us, so we invite you to give us a call right away. We will answer your questions and address your concerns because we want you to make an informed decision that makes the most sense for your situation.