McNamee Hosea News & Press


Retaliation Claims and Federal Employees

Workers in all types of employment settings could find that they are being retaliated against in the workplace. This is true where federal employees are concerned as well. In fact, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has been keeping records on the topic and has identified some trends.

Since 2008, retaliation is the basis of discrimination most frequently alleged by employees working for the federal government. There are multiple activities that could constitute retaliation, including the harassment, demotion or firing of an employee who filed a discrimination complaint. Those who oppose discrimination or participated in a discrimination claim can likewise not be retaliated against. In the most recent year the EEOC has information for, 2013, close to half of all complaints filed with the EEOC were based on retaliation.

While the circumstances surrounding situations where retaliation is found to exist vary, often they follow an accusation of discrimination that is not substantiated. These cases may arise based on a supervisor’s very human response to take action and get revenge against someone who has accused them of illegal treatment.
It is in the best interest of an employer to take steps to prevent retaliation from occurring. To prevent a retaliation accusation from being made supervisors can do many things including avoiding any public discussion of the discrimination accusation, making sure to not isolate the employees involved in the complaint and not threatening the person who made the original complaint or any other person tied to it. Employer training can be used to provide supervisors instructions on how to handle these situations.

When retaliation complaints are filed, regardless of whether it is in the federal sector or not, employers need to make sure they have knowledgeable attorneys on their side.