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DOL lawsuit accuses farm of ‘Godfather’-style retaliation

Want to know what you shouldn’t do if employees question their pay? Leave a severed pig’s head at their workstation.

Discouraging even one worker from complaining violates the NLRA

The NLRA applies to just about every private-sector employer, setting strict rules for what employers can and cannot do when setting workplace rules. For example, it makes it illegal to tell employees not to discuss workplace conditions among themselves. However, until February, discussing work conditions had to involve at least two employees. Not anymore.

You can’t do that: Never ban employees from discussing pay

Even though Section 7 of the National Labor Relations Act has been the law for decades, a 2021 study from the Institute for Women’s Policy Research found nearly half of full-time employees have been prohibited or dissuaded from discussing or disclosing wages.

Supreme Court eases burden for employees claiming retaliation under SOX

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled unanimously on Feb. 8 that under the whistleblower protections written into the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, a whistleblower is not required to prove that his employer acted with retaliatory intent when it punished him for reporting that other employees had committed illegal acts.

NLRB takes on SpaceX in retaliation case

The National Labor Relations Board continues to exercise its power to regulate workplace conduct while enforcing the National Labor Relations Act. The NLRB just told SpaceX that it acted illegally when it fired eight employees for raising sexual harassment concerns. The case shows that increasingly, employees feel emboldened to speak out against what they perceive as management and CEO behavior that violates evolving workplace expectations of how business is supposed to run.

Holiday party triggers sexual hijinks? Beware harassment afterward

Workplace romances or plain old carnal excess can have an adverse effect on the morale of other employees. For example, what happens when co-workers report out-of-control holiday hijinks to management? And what if the co-workers caught in flagrante delicto exact revenge on the tattletales? It just might amount to illegal retaliation.

When high-level harassment erupts, act fast to prevent even worse legal trouble

Here’s a cautionary tale that offers an inevitable lesson: When a supervisor’s harassment spills out into the greater workplace, the claims will grow exponentially.

It’s up to HR: Act fast to fix supervisor gaffes

Supervisors say the darndest things. It’s up to HR to clear things up before some dumb comment lands your organization in deep legal trouble. Don’t delay! If you know the boss was in the wrong, correct the record ASAP and make things right—the sooner, the better. Add a heartfelt apology on behalf of the company, too.

Sink retaliation claims by engaging an outsider to investigate bias complaints

Using an outside entity to investigate internal discrimination or harassment complaints helps prevent retaliation lawsuits. That’s because there’s no reason for an outside investigator to take sides in the outcome.

Avoid retaliation lawsuits with these 4 best practices

Retaliation claims brought by unhappy employees—or really, really unhappy former employees—continue to trouble employers nationwide. Here are four recommendations for setting up systems that can help prevent retaliation claims in the first place and—acknowledging that no system can prevent all such claims—at least help the organization establish and prove possible defenses to claims of retaliation that do arise.