Retaliation in the Federal Workforce

Employment Litigation Lawyer

Workplace Retaliation

When you are a federal employee and feel that your employer is retaliating against you, you may feel that you have run out of options. Just because there are laws that can protect you from retaliation doesn’t mean that you feel comfortable enough to stand up to the person retaliating against you or speak with someone higher up. When this is the case, what can you do? Should you keep going and hope that the person (or people) stop harassing you? Absolutely not. When you go to work you should feel safe and comfortable. If you don’t, you cannot be expected to do your job. 

Why do federal employees experience retaliation?

There are many reasons you may experience retaliation in the workplace. For example, whistleblowers often experience retaliation for reporting on illegal or unethical acts in their jobs. Other people may experience forms of discrimination or harassment at their work from fellow employees or from their employer. Especially in the latter example, you may feel that you do not have any ground to stand on when it comes to reporting someone. When you speak out against someone who discriminates against you or physically, sexually, or emotionally harasses you or someone else at work, you should not be punished. Instead, you should be rewarded for your honesty as you try to make the office a safe place to work. 

What forms of retaliation are common?

There are different forms of retaliation that you may experience in the office. If your employer is the one retaliating against you, it may come in the form of:

  • Losing your job
  • Losing out on a promotion
  • Being reassigned to another area of work
  • Losing certain benefits
  • Being demoted

What kind of laws are in place to protect employees?

If you blew the whistle on illegal or unethical acts and believe that someone is retaliating against you at work, you are protected under the Whistleblower Protection Act. 

Further, if you spoke out against harassment and are experiencing retaliation, you can still get help. Under no circumstances is it okay for someone else to physically, sexually, or emotionally harass you in the workplace and you do not have to live with retaliation for reporting abuse like this. You may feel that if you take this on it is more than you can handle. In fact, this may be the case if you take this on alone. If you are facing this type of issue at work, then it may be time to contact an employment litigation lawyer