Learn to Contend with Expected Differences in the Workplace
Coworkers and employees whose actions are not on the same level as yours does not mean you work in a hostile environment. When you work with people, there are bound to be differences in actions or words you disagree with, and days are bound to have ups and downs. However, this does not constitute a hostile workplace case.
Many employees spend more time at work than at home, so they expect their work atmosphere to be agreeable and enjoyable. It is unfortunate for an employee to work in a hostile workplace and repeat it daily.
If your workplace harbors hostility towards you, the most important thing to realize is that you are not the problem. Employees look forward to going to work when their work promotes a happy and healthy workforce.
Realize that every day at work will not be perfect because life is not perfect, and people are not perfect. Expect good and bad days because this is a natural occurrence. However, if those days are filled with a hostile work environment, it impacts your physical, emotional, and mental health and well-being. Thus, you likely carry this attitude home, affecting your family life.
Everyone at some time in their work life comes against an employer who is a jerk and seems to stir the pot of daily distension among employees. You may have no problem with your employer, but a coworker may stir the pot of distension. In these cases, your employer is as guilty as the employee if they know what is happening and they do nothing about the matter.
Hostile workplace issues can develop into a valid claim against your employer. The most challenging thing you must do is to prove that this person is creating a hostile workplace environment. When you file a claim against an employer or a coworker, the burden of proving hostility in your workplace falls on you. Emotions such as constant work stress, feeling overwhelmed, and continuously upset at work may stem from others’ actions and behaviors.
Signs of a Hostile Work Environment
When the following signs present themselves, it may mean your workplace is a hostile and toxic place. Never despair over a hostile workplace because there are things you can do to eliminate these signs. Common causes of workplace hostility are disability or handicap, religion, and age. Do any of the following issues refer to you and your situation? If they do, you should consult with an employment attorney for positive options to eliminate them.
Assess Your Workplace to Determine Where the Hostility Originates
Employees report that their employers do some of the following because they filed a claim against their employer. If you work in a possibly hostile environment, begin to document names, times, places, and things said to you or done to you. This information helps your employment attorney to determine if you have a case.
- Were you injured on the job and had to file a Worker’s Compensation Claim?
- Do you feel that your employer or supervisor is punishing you in some way?
- Did your employer threaten to fire you?
- The employer added additional work than you could do in your allotted time.
- Jobs were added that were not in your job description, such as heavy lifting.
- Your employer would not approve time off when needed.
- Was a known promotion withheld due to your age, race, or gender? Refer to the Age Discrimination in Employment Act.
- Did you experience a demotion due to age?
- Have you been the subject of bullying due to your age, race, or gender?
- Were you forced into early retirement? Refer to the Reduction in Force Law.
- Are you experiencing racism? Racism is against the law.
When a hostile work environment develops due to race, color, creed, national origin, age, gender, or religious practices, know that you have a case if you can prove these things occurred. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and State and Federal law prohibit racial discrimination in the workplace. It is illegal for any employer to discriminate against you in all areas of your employment. To discriminate against any employee means everything from clothing attire, to health care coverages, to religious beliefs, and everything in between.
If any employee reports their employer or coworker’s unlawful activity, there are laws, commissions, and lawful organizations that protect the whistleblower. It is illegal for any employer or coworker to discriminate against you for reporting criminal activities. You also have the right to contact an employment attorney to start to file a claim and begin a litigation process related to a hostile work environment. All attorneys provide their new clients with a free no-obligation consultation. Present all documentation regarding your situation to your hostile workplace lawyer to determine if you have a case. An employment attorney fights your case, preserves your legal rights, protects your job security, ensures justice is met, and holds the accused accountable for their unlawful behavior and activity.
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