Standing up for yourself after experiencing some form of harassment or discrimination is a courageous act. Unfortunately, reporting your harassment or discrimination to your employer doesn't always mean a return to a comfortable workplace.
The Department of Labor protects people like you who have spoken up about workplace discrimination.
What is retaliation?
Retaliation occurs when your employer takes a negative action against you for participated in what's called a protected activity. Protected activities include things such as reporting discrimination and participation in everything from discrimination investigations to religious activities.
The law states what qualifies as retaliation and what does not. For instance, a justified negative performance review based on your performance history does not qualify discrimination. Here are a few examples of what does retaliation:
- Loss of employment.
- Denial of promotion or demotion to a less-favorable position.
- Sudden, unreasonable increase in workload
- Unjustified discipline or unjustified negative performance review.
What you can do about it
Workplace retaliation is something that you don't have to accept just like you didn't tolerate facing discrimination or harassment. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) will allow you to file a claim within 300 days of the incident and investigate your claim. At the end of the EEOC's investigation, they will issue a ruling.
You can file an EEOC complaint from the comfort of your sofa as well as by mail, over the phone, and in-person at the St. Louis District Office.
Facing discrimination in the workplace is a terrible experience and having to deal with retaliation only worsens the situation. Before deciding whether to accept your circumstances or find a new job, going over your employer's head and filing an EEOC complain may lead to a more desirable resolution.