Do your employees know how and where to submit complaints? — Business Management Daily: Free Reports on Human Resources, Employment Law, Office Management, Office Communication, Office Technology and Small Business Tax Business Management Daily
  • LinkedIn
  • YouTube
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Google+

Do your employees know how and where to submit complaints?

Get PDF file

by on
in Discrimination and Harassment,Human Resources

One of the only legally secure ways to protect your company from hostile work environment lawsuits is to provide clear steps for employees to complain. Then investigate the allegations.

Make sure employees know how to raise concerns and whom to talk to. In­­clude that information in new-hire orientation and the employee handbook. Prove that employees received the in­­for­­mation by having them sign a written acknowledgment. Then create a regular reminder system, such as in­­clud­­ing the information at review time or printing reminders in the employee newsletter.

If you do all this, employees won’t be able to claim they didn’t report harassment because they didn’t know how.

Recent case: FedEx has an anti-harassment policy that invites employees to complain to their supervisor, to HR or through a telephone hotline if they believe they are being harassed or experiencing discrimination.

Nathaniel, a FedEx driver in Ohio, sued the company after what he claimed was months of racial harassment. Nathaniel identifies himself as black.

He said he was constantly referred to as “Mexican” and told, “Arriba!” Also, a co-worker scrawled graffiti saying Mexicans were “proof that American Indians had sex with buffalos.”

FedEx argued that it wasn’t responsi­­ble for the harassment because Nathan­­iel, who admitted he knew how to complain, hadn’t done so until the alleged harassment had gone on for some time. And even when he did complain, he wasn’t specific about the allegations.

The court sided with FedEx. It noted that the company, when it got word of the comments, investigated and then retrained everyone on what’s acceptable behavior in the workplace. That was good enough for the court. (Burrage v. FedEx Freight, No. 4:10-CV-2755, ND OH, 2012)

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Philip Christopher Dilworth April 23, 2017 at 3:05 am

I had a interview at FedEx ground in sparks NV . And I had a background check started on the 17the of this month and I came back as a misdemeanor. Nothing else I called infirmary they told me its up to FedEx if they want to hire me then I called hiring manager at H.R office at FedEx ground in sparks then she tells me it’s up to infomart to let FedEx know if FedEx ground hire me .all I’m getting is the run around .I’m about to lodge a complaint against her and them to the federal trade commision and to a few others and file a police report at Reno police for Code of Business conducts of Ethics and discrimination.so I need to know.thanks .my father is a judge in Reno and that’s what makes it bad for them .

Reply

Daniel Dowd February 26, 2017 at 3:51 pm

I work @Fedex Ground in Londonderry NH. I want to file a complaint against one of the managers their, Pete. He’s lost his mind, and I don’t feel comfortable when he’s around me. He doesn’t care about package handlers! Only about how many hrs we work. To the point it’s gotten ridiculous. I will be more specific when I’m able to find out who exactly I should be writing to. I feel like if I were to got to the human resource person at my work, it would get swept under the rug. Maybe even get fired for speaking my mind. I know there are whistle blower laws, but I’m just a lowly package handler. My voice isn’t loud enough, so to speak. Please help me find who it is I can speak to. So it does not fall on deaf ears….. I love my FedEx job, regardless of how I feel towards my manager, Pete. (I do t know his last name, but I know he’s second in charge under Dave Durrette, who is great, BTW.) But Pete scares me, and I don’t feel comfortable working when he’s near. Thank you, Daniel T. Dowd

Reply

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: