Everyone deserves a chance to succeed. If you work hard and are good at your job, you should receive the rewards your place of employment has to offer, such as raises, promotions and other accolades. You may encounter obstacles, but some struggles are simply part of the process.
Of course, we don't live in a perfect world in which all of the roadblocks you encounter are easy to overcome. You could encounter some obstacles that should never be part of the process and are more of a challenge. Discrimination and harassment have no place in your work environment. If you encounter discrimination at work, you do not have to take it. You may fight back and overcome this obstacle as well.
What does discrimination look like?
First, you need to know that harassment usually stems from discrimination. If you experience harassment at work, your co-worker, supervisor or manager is probably discriminating against you for some reason. Federal and Texas laws dictate that these behaviors are illegal when perpetrated due to:
- Skin color
- National origin
- Genetic information
- Physical or mental disability
This is not an exhaustive list, but it gives you somewhere to start. The law also protects you from discrimination based on your relationship to someone else.
Forms of discrimination
If you wonder whether you are the subject of discrimination, your employer's actions could indicate it. For instance, if a promotion for which you are qualified goes to another person who is younger, a different gender or for another such reason, it could constitute discrimination against you. If you suddenly begin receiving poor performance reviews after years of positive ones, that could constitute discrimination.
If your co-workers and/or supervisors begin making it difficult for you to come to work, that could constitute a hostile work environment. These and other behaviors could fall under the umbrella of harassment, retaliation or both. In any case, they make it difficult for you to perform your job duties, cause you stress and anxiety, and otherwise disrupt your life and ability to work.
What you can do about it
If you become the victim of discrimination, it would be in your best interests to discuss the matter with an employment law attorney before taking any action, including leaving your job. In order to prevail in a claim against your employer, you will need to provide certain evidence, and it only makes your claim more of a challenge if you do not understand your rights or know what you can do to prepare for going outside the company to resolve your issues.