Discriminatory treatment can cause a lot of harm to your confidence and your career. Experiencing ongoing torment can interfere with your productivity and in serious cases, threaten your safety.
You have the right to file a complaint, and you should receive immediate and adequate attention. Knowing how to respond when someone has mistreated you can help you advocate for change.
Workplace discrimination includes any unfavorable treatment based on biases. According to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, discrimination can happen on the basis of your sexual orientation, national origin, race, disability, religion and more. Some examples include the following:
- Your employer pays you less because of your gender
- Someone you work with makes fun of your accent
- Your employer denies you sick leave during post-partum recovery
- Your employer only gives promotions to workers of a certain ethnicity
If you feel uncomfortable, threatened or demoralized because of the way someone treated you, take action. You might wonder if you have blown things out of proportion or perhaps misunderstood the situation. Falling into this manipulative trap can prevent you from getting the help you need and deserve.
Immediately contact the human resource department at your workplace. Disclose your experience. Ask for updates regarding the actions they plan to take. If the discriminatory behavior persists and you have not noticed any action taken to stop it, you might need to take your concerns to the next level. For example, you can file a complaint directly with the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs.
You deserve to feel safe, valued and happy in the workplace. If anyone at work discriminates against you, seek the support of others who can encourage you to stand up for yourself and your rights.