What to do about workplace discrimination and a hostile work environment?

UPDATED: Sep 1, 2011

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What to do about workplace discrimination and a hostile work environment?

I work in the state of FL as a contractor or a large company. The other day I had an employee of the company create (1) a hostile work environment (2) use racial identifications when the individual was talking to me (3) threaten my well being. I have witness to this event (written statements) and I have made complaints to the employer. The employer has done nothing about the employee; I feel threatened and discriminated against. What can I do about this individual? Keep in mind I said nothing to the individual while I was enduring this embarrassing event.

Asked on September 1, 2011 under Employment Labor Law, Florida


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

The law prohibits racial discrimination or harassment at work, so you may have a cause of action against the employer, for the actions of its employee, especially if the employer did not then take some remedial or corrective action.

Also, physical threats are illegal, and you may have a cause of action against the employee for his threat, and possibly against the employer if they had prior notice that he was racist or violent. (Without notice, they would likely not be responsible for an action of his outside the scope of his employment; presumably, he's not employed to threaten contractors.)

It seems as if it would be worthwhile for you to consult with an employment attorney, to evaluate the strength and potential worth (i.e. how much money?) of your case. Good luck.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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