Wrongful suspension from work.

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Wrongful suspension from work.

I am a male nurse and recently had a disagreement with a co-worker. Although I would consider us on good terms she was upset because I questioned her decision. She was upset because of personal reasons going on with her child but became emotional to the point of crying. This was witnessed by a third party and reported to our manager and I was thus suspended pending an investigation for creating a hostile work environment. At no time did I raise my voice or threaten this person. I feel I am being unjustly accused because of my gender. I don’t believe this would have transpired if it had been a discussion between 2 female employees.

Asked on June 29, 2018 under Employment Labor Law, North Carolina

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

It may be unjust, but unless you are right and your gender played a role, it was not wrongful: as a general matter, since employment in this nation is "employment at will," an employee may be suspended (or terminated) for essentially any reason, regardless of whether it is fair or even factually correct.
Of course, there are exceptions: one is that an employee may not be discriminated against--treated worse or differently--due to his or her gender. Since nursing is a female-dominated field, it may be that you are right and that you are being treated more harshly due to your sex. You may wish to contact the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) about filing a complaint; the EEOC can, if they feel there may be merit, investigate, then, if apppropriate, take action on your behalf.


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