There are laws on the books from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) that prohibit retaliation against employees by their employer. The laws also protect employees from discrimination in the workplace. When it comes to retaliation, employees are able to take part in certain protected activities without having to worry about their employer retaliating against them in one way or another.
Employers are not allowed to retaliate against employees who participate or refuse to participate in any of the following activities:
- Answering questions in an investigation led by the employer into sexual harassment
- Filing an EEOC complaint, lawsuit, investigation or another claim
- Requesting the employer to provide an accommodation for a religious belief or disability
- Talking with a supervisor about discrimination related to employment
- Refusing to follow any orders given by the employer that could involve discrimination
- Asking a supervisor about wages in an attempt to discover discrimination in payment practices
- Intervening in sexual advances to protect a co-worker
- Refusing sexual advances by a supervisor
Any other act performed by the employee that opposes discrimination is protected by the EEOC so long as the employee rightfully believes that the act would be considered discrimination or retaliation in the workplace or would violate the laws set forth by the EEOC. This is the case even if the employee did not use the proper terms to describe the situation.
Employment discrimination is still a serious issue at businesses throughout New Jersey and the rest of the country. One way a business can retaliate against an employee is by wrongfully terminating them from their contract after being involved in a protected activity.