Employees have many rights, including the ability to file complaints about workplace conditions, harassment, discrimination or other problems in the workplace. They also have the right to organize, discuss their incomes, refuse to accommodate employers’ illegal demands and act as witnesses to investigations when complaints are filed by their peers.
Naturally, this doesn’t always make employers happy. It’s considered retaliation, however, if the employer or its representatives take certain actions because the employee participated in a protected action.
What type of actions are considered retaliation?
Any action against the employee that’s negative, including moving someone to a less desirable shift or making them take a pay cut, can qualify as retaliation. The same is true for termination, reduction in hours, and making conditions unbearable for the employee at work.
Employees should remember that participating in protected activity doesn’t give them the ability to slack off at work. Employers can still discipline workers if they’re breaking the established rules or failing to perform their job duties appropriately.
Keeping a record of what’s going on when you’re working is important. This includes things like getting a copy of a performance review and keeping track of your supervisor’s accolades over your work.
Taking a realistic look at how you were treated after you took part in a protected activity is important. You may realize that the write-up you had or your termination was strictly due that that activity. If that occurs, you should consult with someone familiar with these matters so you can determine what options you have for dealing with this type of situation.