Going to work is something that most people do many days of the week. Some Colorado residents may love their jobs and their coworkers and look forward to going into work each day. Others, however, may dread having to go to work because they either dislike their job or because they do not feel appreciated or treated well while working.
Unfortunately, workplace harassment, discrimination and retaliation can all make you and other employees feel out of place and lead to detrimental outcomes for your productivity, mental health and career. If you believe that your employer has retaliated against you, you may want to obtain an assessment of your predicament.
How can you be sure it is retaliation?
Acts of retaliation are not always clear. In some cases, an employer, manager or coworker could treat you in a way that you see as unfair but does not necessarily break the law. However, if you faced harassment or discrimination or witnessed others subjecting a coworker to such mistreatment and filed a complaint, any unfair treatment you face after that action could fall into the category of retaliation.
Filing a complaint regarding unlawful actions in the workplace and participating in investigations into such claims are both protected activities. As a result, if your employer fires you, demotes you, lowers your pay, gives you an unfavorable work schedule, assigns you unnecessarily difficult workloads, verbally abuses you or takes other adverse actions against you, those actions may be retaliatory. However, you would need to provide evidence that the negative actions resulted because of your complaint or because of your participation in an investigation.
What can you do?
If you fully believe that the treatment you experienced stemmed from your participation in a protected activity, you may want to explore your legal options. Filing a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission is often a first step, but you may also want to gain information on other steps you could take, such as filing a lawsuit against your employer.
Because such actions and cases can be immensely complicated, it is wise to have support. You may want to reach out to a Colorado employment law attorney who can go over the details of your ordeal and help you determine what courses of action may best suit your particular circumstances. It can feel overwhelming to consider taking legal action of any kind, and having an advocate on your side could help you feel more confident.