Solving your employment Problems

How can you address discrimination or abuse by a co-worker?

On Behalf of | Jan 10, 2024 | Employment law |

No one deserves to be mistreated or abused at work. Unfortunately, it happens more often than you may think. Most workers associate mistreatment with the employer, but co-workers may also treat one another wrongfully.

You may think you have no options in the face of worker-on-worker harassment, bullying or discrimination, but that is not so. Generally, employers are the ones who are ultimately liable for reported mistreatment under state and federal laws. Therefore, they should address a problem when an employee reports it. Here’s the best way to do that.

Report all violations

You may want to ignore the problem, hoping the perpetrator will lose interest. However, bullies are usually persistent and may turn your work environment into a waking nightmare. Tell your supervisor or a human resources officer about each instance of abuse, and follow any necessary steps outlined in your employer’s policies and procedures guidelines.

Document everything

Keep a detailed record of the incidents with the date, time and location of the mistreatment. Include what was said or done by the other party and the steps you took in the aftermath, such as reporting the matter. Detail how your employer did or did not respond to the report. Save any evidence, such as emails, texts, photos and witness statements supporting your claim.

Know your rights

Depending on the nature and severity of the abuse, you may have legal recourse. It’s important to know the laws and policies that apply to your situation, such as anti-discrimination and anti-harassment laws in Ohio and on the federal level. An experienced legal representative can explain your rights and guide your next steps.

Mistreatment or abuse from co-workers is never acceptable and should not be tolerated. This brief guideline can help you build a strong case, empowering you to stand up for yourself and your rights.