Though you deserve a safe and friendly work environment, there are times when your employer and other employees can make your place of employment uncomfortable and stressful. You can’t always do anything about it (other than move on).
However, there are times when you may feel singled out due to your identity. If you are being harassed due to your status, which is legally protected, you may be able to take legal action against your employer.
This is called discrimination, and you don’t have to take it!
Types of discrimination
There are many different types of discrimination. You could be harassed due to any of the following:
- Sexual orientation
- Ethnic or national origin
- Family Status (whether you have children or are planning on having some)
What does discrimination look like?
Though most people think of bullying and calling names as discrimination, the truth is that there are many subtle ways that could be considered discrimination. These include:
Unfair questions during your interview.
During an interview, you should only be asked questions that relate to the position that you are applying for. They can’t ask you about your age, sex, marital status, family status, religion, or anything else.
It is important to remember that, if they treat you unfairly during your interview, they will likely continue to do so when you are hired.
Treated differently than other employees.
You may feel like you are being treated a lot differently than some of the other employees. Instead of being asked to do something, it is demanded. If something happens, they may point their fingers at you, before looking for the real culprit.
Stuck doing work nobody else wants.
No matter what you do, there are jobs that nobody wants to do. Though you should rotate through them, you may find that you are constantly being given the jobs that nobody else will do and this can be considered a form of discrimination.
Not allowing unpaid time off for medical issues and pregnancy.
If you are injured or pregnant, you deserve time off to heal and take care of yourself (and your new baby). Though it would be nice to be paid, it doesn’t have to be. Your employer just has to give you the time off that you need.
Your job needs to be waiting when you are ready to return.
When you are ready to return to work, you should be able to go right back to the same job that you left. Your employer can’t hire someone to replace you.
If you want to use vacation and sick pay during your time off, you should be allowed to.
If you are able to save up vacation and sick time, you should be allowed to use it during your time off.
There are times when you feel like you deserve a promotion, yet it is given to someone else who is less deserving. If you don’t get the promotion because of who you are, you may have a case.
Unlawful or wrongful termination occurs when you lose your job because of who you are. Though this can be hard to prove (because your employer has to have a good reason to fire you), you may want to investigate further if you believe that you were discriminated against.
Are you facing harassment in the workplace? We can help.
At Villaume & Schiek, P.A., we are committed to finding the truth and taking legal action on your behalf. We are committed to helping employees who have suffered from work harassment in Minnesota. It is our goal to make sure that everyone has the work environment that they are legally entitled to.
Disclaimer: The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your individualsituation. We invite you to contact us and welcome your calls, letters and electronic mail. Contacting us does not create an attorney-client relationship. Please do not send any confidential information to us until such time as an attorney-client relationship has been established.