Thank you again for that information, it was helpful. In Washington, as with other states, if an employee quits their job, they carry the burden of proof to show that they quit for "good cause" attributable to the job and
that they exhausted all of their remedies with the employer before they quit. This is not an easy burden to carry and generally speaking unless the employee can prove that the employer either engaged in an illegal act (such as discrimination, retaliation
for asserting a legal right under wage
laws, WC, FMLA, or similar laws, or filing a whistleblower
complaint with OSHA
, IRS, etc. ) or
drastically and adversely altered the terms and conditions of employment (such as hours, pay, duties, etc.) in such a way that the employee can no longer work there because of economic, medical or familial reasons. Other than that, it is nearly impossible to show "good cause" to quit.
As for whether you would have that cause, I cannot say with certainty (no one can) because I do not have all of the facts from the perspective of the employer and also because the decisionmaker (the State) would bring their own perspective to the decision once they have heard both sides. What I can say though is that what you described is not hostile work environment harasssment unless
it is based on your use of FMLA or because you are a member of a protected class under employment discrimination laws. In other words, there is no such thing as unlawful hostile workplace harassment without discrimination. It is a legal term of art that only applies in discrimination cases. So, unless that is motivating these actions and
the State believes that these actions were "severe and pervasive" and
you had exhausted you remedies within the company to resolve it, then you could not use this as a reason for quiting with "good cause."
Unfortunately, your best path to unemployment is by actually being let go involuntarily. At least in those cases, the employer carries the burden of proof at the unemployment level to show that you intentionally, or through gross negligence, violated a company policy, standard, rule, etc. If the facts are as you have shared them, they would be unable to do so and you would win your unemployment claim.
You can read exactly what the State says about "good cause" to quit by going to: http://www.oah.wa.gov/Unemployment.shtml#establishgoodc
So, from an unemployment perspective, you are better off being terminated, as you do not appear to have a sufficiently strong case to quit for "good cause" even though the employer is being unreasonable and perhaps unethical. But from a mental health standpoint, it may be better to quit and move on. If you cannot afford to do that without other income, then you are in a position of trying to actively find employment before you quit your job, so that you do have to depend on winning an unemployment fight.
Please let me know if you need any clarification. I would be glad to assist you further if I can.