While in a perfect world all employers would be honest, law-abiding and non-discriminatory, we do not live in a perfect world. Employees face issues like racism, sexual harassment and dangerous working conditions every day. So what’s an employee to do when they believe an employer’s actions or practices may be illegal? The simple answer: take action. State and federal laws protect employees from discrimination, harassment, retaliation and unsafe working conditions. If your employer is violating your rights or putting your well-being at risk, an experienced Los Angeles employment attorney can help.
Discriminatory Practices And Harassment
Employers cannot discriminate against employees or applicants based on any legally protected characteristics, such as race, nationality, age, gender, sex, religion, disability, sexual orientation or pregnancy. Workplace discrimination might include being treated differently than other employees by a supervisor and/or being forced to endure a hostile work environment where harassment in the form of offensive jokes, comments, pictures or actions is allowed to persist. Workplace harassment is illegal if it is based on a legally protected characteristic. Sexual harassment, in particular, is an especially pervasive problem in workplaces around the country.
If you are being discriminated against at work, or if you are being harassed or subjected to a hostile work environment based on an illegal factor as outlined above, follow the company’s procedures for reporting the issue. If the situation is not promptly and fully resolved, or if at any time you fear for your safety, contact a qualified Los Angeles employment lawyer to determine what legal remedies may be available to you.
Employers have a duty to provide employees with a safe work environment and must follow all applicable safety standards set forth by the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA). The Occupational and Safety Health Act of 1970 allows workers to file a complaint with OSHA and request an inspection if there are serious hazards in the workplace or their employer is violating OSHA standards.
It is illegal for an employer to retaliate against an employee for filing an OSHA complaint. Retaliatory actions might include unjustly firing, demoting, transferring or denying benefits to the employee. If you want to learn about your rights before filing an OSHA complaint, or if your employer has already retaliated against you, contact a dedicated Los Angeles employment attorneytoday.
State and federal whistleblower laws protect workers who report the illegal actions of their employers. Employers cannot retaliate against employees who provide truthful information to authorities about an employer’s potentially illegal activities. Examples of whistleblowing include reporting investment fraud to the Securities and Exchange Commission or reporting illegal chemical disposal to the Environmental Protection Agency. To ensure your rights are protected and that your employer’s illegal actions are reported to the proper authorities, contact a knowledgeable Los Angeles employment lawyer before you blow the whistle.