While you’ve worked at your current company, you’ve seen many things with which you disagree. You saw a supervisor catcall a fellow employee. You saw a client come in and continuously flirt with a coworker whom you knew was uncomfortable, but the boss encouraged her to allow it. After all, your boss wants the customer to be happy.
After many months of witnessing this kind of behavior, you felt like it was time to speak up. The last time your boss said something inappropriate, you told him that it was sexual harassment and that he shouldn’t speak with your coworkers that way. Somehow, you weren’t surprised when you found a termination notice on your desk the following day.
What should you do if you are fired over standing against harassment?
This situation may appear cut and dried to you, but you’ll also want to make it that way for the court. When you’re in a situation like this, it’s important to write down the names of witnesses who saw harassment take place and to note the date and time of those events. You should record all you can about those events, so that you have a full record of what happened and if anyone asked for anything to be done about it. It’s even better if you have a recording or statements about what happened from the people involved.
In most cases, it’s smart to go to your human resources department with complaints first. It’s their job to look into cases of harassment and to put an end to harassment when possible. However, there are situations where the HR department may simply give someone a slap on the wrist and continue with business as usual. That is unfair to the workers who are suffering as a result of the harassment taking place.
If you’re fired because you stand up for those who don’t feel comfortable standing up for themselves or because you report an incident you’re not comfortable with, that’s retaliation. Retaliation is against the law, so your employer should not fire you for making a complaint about harassment in good faith. Retaliating against those who report problems in the workplace is unfair and illegal, so remember that you have a right to report and can file a claim if your employer fires you for speaking up against their actions. Your attorney will help you build a case based on the evidence you’ve collected over time.