Are Workplace Bullies Breaking Laws?

Have you experienced name-calling, threats and exclusion from activities at work? Have the people responsible tried to sabotage or belittle your work, spread rumors, or falsely accuse you of making mistakes? Perhaps they have they ignored or dismissed your comments in front of others for no reason? If you answered yes to these questions, you may be a victim of workplace bullies.

According to the Workplace Bullying Institute, 35 percent of American workers have reported being victims of workplace bullying. These workers may be unaware that workplace bullying has a negative effect on health. Workplace bullying shares a link with anxiety, clinical depression, high blood pressure, heart palpitations, insomnia and loss of concentration.

Even though workplace bullying can make you uncomfortable and miserable in a dozen different ways, it is not always illegal. However, there are circumstances where bullying is harassment based on race, gender, national origin or religion. In these cases, workplace bullying may be illegal under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

What Can You Do If Workplace Bullies are Causing a Hostile Workplace?

If you believe the bullying is discriminatory, you have options for gathering evidence. Workplace bullies may send you threatening emails, text messages or voicemails.

Depending on the circumstances, you can collect these correspondences and store them somewhere safe. You can also start keeping detailed logs of conversations and include information on who is responsible for the bullying. This information might be helpful for approaching HR, and it may come in handy later should you decide to file a lawsuit.

The Los Angeles employment law attorneys at Kesluk, Silverstein, Jacob & Morrison, P.C. can help people fight back against workplace discrimination.

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