The workplace can be a challenging landscape to navigate, even under the best circumstances. When you run into problem with co-workers or those in positions of authority, things can spiral out of control quickly. One of the smartest things you can do if you are having problems in the workplace is to speak with someone who understands your rights and can explain how the law protects you.
This is especially true if you are facing retaliation for attempting to correct a wrong in the workplace. There are laws in place specifically designed to protect you from retaliation if you file a report against a co-worker or your employer for harassment or discrimination.
These anti-retaliation laws are designed to prevent punishment for reporting illegal behavior in the workplace. They also protect employees who participate into an investigation related to workplace discrimination or harassment.
… because you reported harassment or discrimination, or gave information related to an investigation into these acts? You need to speak to an employment retaliation lawyer about your rights.
It’s also important to realize retaliation by an employer might not be as obvious as losing your job or being denied an increase in salary. Sometimes retaliatory actions are subtle and need to be considered carefully.
For instance, if you’ve made it clear to your employer that working a particular shift is difficult for you because of other obligations, but after reporting wrongdoing in the workplace you were assigned to that shift, it could be a case of retaliation.
Employers have the right to ask employees to work when they are needed, but are not authorized to circumvent the law by turning a workable situation into an unworkable one in retaliation for your actions. If you were suddenly terminated for being unable to work a different shift – something that was not a problem until you reported wrongdoing – you might be entitled to take legal action against retaliation.
Employees are protected from retaliation by federal and state laws. When necessary, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) will intervene on your behalf to protect your rights as an employee. This is the case even when you filed a report or participated in an investigation that did not reveal evidence against your employer. Other federal laws and laws in California might also offer protection against retaliation in the workplace.
First and foremost, keep a written record of all occurrences and all discussions you have related to your concerns. This will make your claims more credible and help you keep the facts about various events straight in your memory.
Attempt to report your concerns to your company’s human resources department. If you are not satisfied with the explanation you get from HR, or you are unable to share your concerns internally, you have a right to speak to an employment retaliation lawyer. You are entitled to resources and legal representation under the law.
To learn more about retaliation in the workplace or to discuss your case with an employment retaliation lawyer, contact the Holmes Law Group.
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