5 Ways to Handle Workplace Retaliation in 2022

Retaliating against employees who exercise their workplace rights is a common, preventable mistake. Find out how to ban retaliation from your company.
Every year, retaliation heads the list of complaints filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). That’s because it’s often tacked onto other complaints, from sexual harassment to age discrimination.

Retaliation is also the toughest charge to shake. It’s not uncommon for companies to win a discrimination lawsuit only to lose on the accompanying retaliation claim.

Unfortunately, businesses often walk into retaliation complaints through innocent, avoidable mistakes. By knowing how to handle retaliation at work, you can avoid those costly mistakes.

What is workplace retaliation?
Retaliation occurs when an employer punishes an employee for exercising their workplace rights. Punishment can be any adverse action that might deter a reasonable employee from pursuing protected activities.

Examples of adverse actions include:

Constructive discharge, when punishment drives an employee to

Chicago Fire Department makes progress, but not enough, toward ending racial, sexual discrimination

A Chicago Fire Department that remains 91% male and 64% white has made some, but not all, of the changes needed to stop sexual and racial discrimination and protect employees who complain about it from retaliation, a new report concluded Tuesday.

Last year, Chicago’s now-former Inspector General Joe Ferguson shined a glaring spotlight on the white male bastion of city government and demanded immediate changes in policy, training and employee protection.

The audit was accompanied by a survey in which 73 of all 285 respondents, both male and female — that’s 26% — reported experiencing sexual harassment “at least once” at CFD.

Even more troubling was the rate of sexual harassment of women. Out of 45 female survey respondents, 28 — 62% — reported being

False Claims Act Retaliation Claims in 6th Circuit Case

On March 31, 2021, in United States ex rel. Felten v. William Beaumont Hospital, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals held that an employer’s allegedly retaliatory conduct directed at an employee after the employee’s termination can give rise to a False Claims Act (FCA) retaliation claim. In doing so, the Sixth Circuit embraced a minority position among courts nationwide and created a split with the Tenth Circuit, which held in 2018 that only retaliation against someone who is a current employee at the time can support an FCA claim.

The facts of Felten are relatively straightforward. Mr. Felten believed that his employer, a hospital, was violating the FCA and an analogous Michigan statute by paying kickbacks to physicians and physicians’ groups in exchange for referrals

Sierra Creative Sexual Harassment and Retaliation Lawsuit Settled

Sierra Creative Systems, Inc., doing business as Addressers, a Paramount, Calif.-based printing, mailing and fulfillment company, has agreed to pay $690,000 to settle a sexual harassment and retaliation lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the federal agency announced today.

The EEOC’s lawsuit charged Sierra Creative with subjecting female employees to sexual harassment and retaliation at its North Hollywood facility. The alleged harassment included unwelcome touching, sexual comments and derogatory statements about women. The EEOC further asserted that Sierra Creative failed to adequately respond to complaints of discrimination made against one of its supervisors. In addition, the EEOC alleged that those who complained were denied hours and subjected to retaliatory harassment.

Such alleged conduct violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

Advice For Dealing With Workplace Retaliation: Save Those Nasty Emails

Former Fox News anchor Gretchen Carlson’s $20 million settlement with Fox News for sexual harassment was unusual in some ways; she received an apology from the network and her complaint resulted in the ouster of former Fox News CEO Roger Ailes.
Her high-profile case is just one of an increasing number of retaliation claims. Retaliation cases now exceed claims of race discrimination, making up about 45 percent of complaints filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
And there are those, like Lorraine Segal, whose cases never result in a filing. Segal gave up her tenured professorship at a community college teaching English after years of targeting by other faculty members.
“I was different, I was the only Jewish lesbian,” she says. “I was extremely competent

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