What are my options if I feel like I am being discriminated against or harassed at work?

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What are my options if I feel like I am being discriminated against or harassed at work?

I had a new management company take over at my current job. I was told that I make too much money, and I feel like I am being forced to quit. All my responsibilities have been taken away and I am the only employee being forced to work in 4 different cities, doing 2different jobs. I had to take emergency leave, and feel like I am being harassed for it. I feel as though it is only a matter of time before I lose my job. Also, my new boss lied to my site manager, saying that I turned him into corporate for a DUI, which I didn’t. Now he thinks I did, and I’m really worried about my job now.

Asked on April 20, 2011 under Employment Labor Law, Idaho

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

There are several different issues here:

1) First, much "discrimination" at work is legal--an employer does not need to treat employees fairly or equally. So unless you are being discriminated against for a  protected reason--e.g. because of race, religion, age over 40, sex, or disability--your employer may treat you badly or harass you. On the other hand, if you feel the behavior is because of your membership in a protected category, then you may have a legal claim and might speak with an employment attorney.

2) If you have an employment contract, its terms must be honored; if not, you are an employee at will and can be given extra responsibilities, be disciplined, be transferred, be terminated, etc. at will, for any reason (as long as it's not illegal discrimination, per (1) above).

3) If someone has made public (even to one other person) untrue factual statements about you (not opinions, not matter how negative; it must be a factual statement), then that may be defamation and you may have a cause of action.


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