Now’s a good time to remind supervisors and managers that they must keep a cool head if an employee threatens to take a complaint to the EEOC or the Illinois Department of Human Rights.
Angrily accusing the employee of insubordination or disloyalty will probably be viewed as retaliation for engaging in protected activity.
Recent case: Ryan Lord complained that co-workers were sexually harassing him and demanded thatmake it stop. When nothing improved, he said he would take his case to the EEOC or the Illinois Department of Human Rights. He was fired the next day after a supervisor allegedly told him that such threats were inappropriate.
He sued and the court said the case should go to trial. His threat was protected activity and firing him could be seen as retaliation. (Lord v. High Voltage Software, No. 09-CV-4469, ND IL, 2010)
- Of course you have an anti-harassment policy; now make sure all your employees can use it
- Can we recover the cost of a former employee's laptop by withholding from his final paycheck?
- Get the most out of your next HR conference
- Can deciding not to discipline lead to court?
- Age difference of six years or less destroys employee's age-bias claim.