Employment Law Questions? Ask an Employment Lawyer.
What a terrible situation. I'm so sorry that you are experiencing this. How can I help?
Is there any type of legal action that I can take and do I have a case?
You said that these events occurred between 2009 and 2013. When was the most recent occurrance?
The Porch Monkey incident and the employee saying ai was workign them like a ni**er happpend within the last month
Let's talk about the racial statements a bit. Has the leadership in your company been alerted to all of these events? Have they taken any steps to address them?
Yes they know about them and nothing has been done.
This sounds like it is pervasive in your company culture. Do the other employees have the same impression as you do of the workplace environment (more or less)?
Well, there is rarely a smoking gun in employment discrimination cases, so you have to look at the totality of the circumstances. Isolated incidents or gentle joking are not illegal, but it is illegal under the federal law to create or allow a work environment that is hostile to someone based on their race, color, gender, age (if 40 or older), religion, disability, or genetic information (etc.). When there is a pattern of abuses, and where the pattern can be identified by multiple sources within the company, the evidence is usually sufficient to make a case. I say "usually" because the nuances of every case are different, so this information should not be relied upon as complete or advice without consulting in person with counsel. But that said, your workplace sounds just dreadful and I've seen significant lawsuits won with less than half of the things you have described...
With workplace discrimination matters, the first step is ordinarily to file a complaint with the EEOC. The EEOC (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission) will investigate any complaint of workplace harassment or discrimination...
So I should contact the EEoc instead of a Lawyer?
If it appears that the employer has illegally caused or permitted a hostile work environment, they will permit a lawsuit to commence against the employer. In fact, in their discretion, they may initiate a lawsuit themselves on behalf of the affected employees.
Ideally, you would want to contact a lawyer before going to the EEOC because a lawyer can help you articulate yourself in a way that is most effective, and can also help you secure any evidence that might be useful later in your case. That said, I would estimate that 90-95% of people just go straight to the EEOC without retaining an attorney.
Does that make sense?
Here is a link with instructions on how to file a complaint with the EEOC: http://www.eeoc.gov/employees/charge.cfm
Thanks for your help....
Be aware that the statute of limitations is generally very short for filing an EEOC complaint. Typically, it must be filed within 6 months of the most recent illegal incident.
It was my pleasure. I hope that this information was helpful.
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