Yonkers is a diverse city that consists of 20.3 square miles. It has thriving populations of Irish Americans, Italian Americans, Arab Americans, and Slavic Americans, among other groups. You may experience a lot of anxiety about bringing a charge or claim against your employer for discrimination or harassment. This fear may be justified, since sometimes employers ignore the law and penalize workers who complain of discrimination or harassment while continuing to employ and reward the perpetrators of misconduct. If you are facing retaliation for speaking out against discrimination on the job, you may have a basis to sue for damages. At Phillips & Associates, our Yonkers retaliation lawyers are ready to represent you in a claim.Laws Governing Retaliation
Retaliation occurs when an employer takes an adverse step against an employee who engages in a protected activity. Speaking out about discrimination or harassment or even filing a charge or lawsuit are protected activities. Both federal and state laws have prohibitions against retaliation. Protected characteristics under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 include race, color, sex, religion, and national origin. The Americans with Disabilities Act specifies that disability is a protected characteristic. The Age Discrimination in Employment Act prohibits age discrimination against people over 40.
The New York State Human Rights Law tends to be more expansive than federal law, providing protection on the basis of race, color, national origin, creed, age (over 18), sexual orientation, sex, gender identity, marital status, military status, criminal or arrest record, status as a victim of domestic violence, disabilities, and predisposing genetic characteristics. You are entitled to sue if you believe in good faith that you were mistreated on the basis of having any of these protected characteristics.Proving Retaliation
To establish liability, a retaliation attorney in the Yonkers area will need to prove that: (1) you engaged in a protected activity, and (2) because of this engagement, your employer took adverse steps against you. The steps need to be substantially adverse, and of the sort that they would convince another worker not to support or file a discrimination charge him or herself. Retaliatory measures can include demoting a worker, terminating them, reassigning them to an unfavorable position, and other penalizing conduct that would make a reasonable person less likely to complain about discrimination.
You can have a retaliation claim even if you are wrong about the discrimination or harassment, as long as you believed in good faith that you were being subjected to retaliation on the basis of a protected activity. This is crucial because employers are increasingly more sophisticated and understand that they are not supposed to discriminate. As a result, they may employ pretexts for taking adverse measures, and it can be difficult for an employee to know for sure that he or she was being subjected to retaliation. However, a Yonkers retaliation attorney can advise them on the likely strength of their claim.
If, for example, you are disabled, your coworkers might make harassing remarks about your sex life as a disabled person. These remarks make you extremely uncomfortable, so you file a grievance with your employer. Your manager sits you down and says that you will be put into a different work group, also overseen by the manager. This work group is not worse, but in a month, you start to receive negative performance reviews from the manager, and you are fired a couple of months later, supposedly for failing to be a team player.
It is possible that you have been subjected to retaliation for your initial complaints of disability and sexual harassment, even though your manager did take steps to correct the harassment. Even if the court decides that the employer took appropriate steps in response to the initial harassment, such that there is no liability for harassment, you may be able to recover damages for the retaliation and wrongful termination if you can show a causal connection between the protected activity and the wrongful termination.Get Advice from a Retaliation Lawyer in Yonkers or Surrounding Communities
At Phillips & Associates, we help clients who have faced employment discrimination and related retaliation in Yonkers. If you believe that your employer punished you for taking a legally protected action, contact us at (212) 248-7431 or through our online form for a free consultation to find out how we can help.