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As many retaliation attorneys would likely acknowledge, too many employers fire or harass people who are “problems” for the employer. If the employee is truly a “problem” in a legitimate sense, then the employer is justified. However, for many employers, an employee who has complained about unlawful activity or discrimination is a “problem.” Likewise, an employee who tells the truth or participates in an employment discrimination proceeding is a “problem.” Or, an employee who fights for workplace equality or justice is a “problem.”
Luckily, the law broadly protects many of these kind of so-called “problem” employees who complain to their employers about certain forms of discrimination or harassment, or who blow the whistle on various issues. Similarly, as many retaliation attorneys know, the law broadly protects many employees who participate in a discrimination proceeding. And, this form of protection (allowing employees to bring retaliation claims) is a good thing–because having law-abiding employers is also a good thing.
Many federal laws make it illegal to fire, harass, or retaliate against applicants or employees because they filed a charge of discrimination, because they complained to their employer about discrimination, harassment, or some forms of unlawful activity, or because they have participated in proceedings with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. These things are called “protected activities,” and if you have suffered retaliation from your employer for engaging in any protected activity as defined by an applicable statute, retaliation attorneys can likely help you with your retaliation claims.
For instance, invoking an employer’s sexual harassment complaint process often constitutes protected opposition. Telling an harasser to stop his offensive behavior likewise can be protected activity. An employee who speaks out about protected discrimination not on her own initiative, but in answering questions during an employer’s internal investigation is also often protected. Helping another employee complain, even if the person helping is a supervisor, might be protected activity. If an employer refuses to commit discrimination, that too can be protected activity.
Have you done one of those things only to shortly thereafter suffer consequences from your employer? Suffered consequences might include any harm in any aspect of employment, including hiring, firing, pay, job assignments, promotions, layoff, training, fringe benefits, and any other term or condition of employment. It might also include harm caused by your employer or someone at your employer outside of the workplace.
If so, then you might have a retaliation claim, and you should consider contacting one of our retaliation attorneys who offer free consultations.
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You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your situation. We hope you will contact us.
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