New York City employees have the right to come to work in a safe environment free from sexual harassment. Employers are prohibited from retaliating against employees who file sexual harassment claims. Retaliation could be any type of adverse action to discourage an employee from reporting sexual harassment or asserting his or her legal rights.
Protecting Workers’ Rights to Exercise their Rights Without Intimidation or Backlash
Has your employer taken adverse action against you for pursuing a sexual harassment claim? If so, you may have the right to bring a claim against them and collect significant damages from your employer. The sexual harassment retaliation attorneys at Lipsky Lowe LLP have the skill, experience, and knowledge necessary to advocate for you and bring a retaliation claim on your behalf. Contact Lipsky Lowe LLP to schedule a free case evaluation.
Retaliation is Prohibited by Federal, New York, and New York City Laws
Employees have a right to file a claim against their employers for sexual harassment. Unfortunately, many employers choose to retaliate against employees by threatening them, further harassing them, or terminating their employment in retaliation. Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, the New York Human Rights Law, and the City Human Rights Law all protect employees from unlawful retaliation. When a New York City employer retaliates against the employee for any of the following actions, the employee has a right to file a claim:
- Opposes a discriminatory practice that is prohibited by the New York City Human Rights Law
- Make or files a complaint with the New York City Commission on human rights, his or her employer, or any other agency
- Testifies, assists, or participates in an investigation, proceeding, or hearing related to a prohibited activity by the New York City Human Rights Law
Activities Protected from Retaliation
If you have been sexually harassed in the workplace, you have a right to pursue a claim against your employer. You also have a right to notify your employer and demand that the sexual harassment stop. You have a right to enforce your rights as an employee without being retaliated against. Employers in New York City cannot retaliate against individuals for opposing a practice made unlawful by an employment discrimination statute.
Specifically, sexual harassment is unlawful in New York City. If you oppose sexual harassment in the workplace, either of yourself or a co-worker, your employer cannot retaliate against you.
Additionally, your employer can’t retaliate against you for filing a sexual harassment charge, testifying, assisting, or participating in any manner of an investigation, proceeding, or hearing. All of these activities are considered protected activities. Other examples of protected activities include:
- Filing a discrimination lawsuit against your employer for sexual harassment
- Reporting sexual harassment to your supervisor, the federal EEOC, the New York State Division of Human Rights, or the New York City Commission on Human Rights
What Constitutes Sexual Harassment Retaliation in New York City?
Retaliation happens when an employer takes any adverse action against an employee trying to enforce his or her rights. An adverse action is an action that would prevent reasonable people from exercising their rights. Firing an employee after the employee makes a sexual harassment claim is one of the most common forms of retaliation. However, there are many different ways employers can wrongfully retaliate against their employees for filing a discrimination complaint or engaging in another protected activity. Some of the most common examples of retaliatory actions by employers include the following:
- Making threats
- Offering unjustified poor performance evaluations or references
- Increasing surveillance of an employee
- Reduction in pay
- Denial of compensation or bonuses otherwise due to the employee
- Passing the employee over for a promotion
- Reprimand, suspension, or other disciplinary action
- Negative evaluations, performance reviews, or other documents placed in an employee’s file
- Transfer or reassignment to an undesirable shift
- Creating a hostile work environment
- Providing a negative reference
- Significantly reducing an employee’s work hours
Proving Sexual Harassment Retaliation
Employers will often deny that they have retaliated against an employee, making it difficult for employees to prove their claims. You will need to show that the adverse action your employer took against you directly resulted from your participation in a protected activity.
When an employer makes up another lawful reason for taking adverse action against you, proving retaliation can be difficult. Working with an attorney will increase the likelihood that your claim will be successful. The attorneys at Lipsky Lowe LLP will work with you to build a stronger case by gathering evidence showing the following:
- The adverse action occurred right after your employer found out about the protected activity
- The reasons your employer gave for taking adverse action against you don’t match your past employee performance reviews
- Other employees have committed the same infraction you’ve been accused of but were not punished as harshly
How Can I Fight Sexual Harassment Retaliation?
The federal government and the New York State Department of Labor recognize a private right of action for retaliation. You can also pursue a claim for retaliation through the New York City Commission on Human Rights. When it comes to pursuing compensation after retaliation, you have multiple options. We recommend talking to an attorney as soon as possible so you can develop a strategy to obtain the most compensation for your claim.
Anti-discrimination and retaliation claims have short time limits. If you do not file a claim before the time limit expires, you may lose your ability to pursue legal relief. The sooner you reach out to an attorney, the sooner you can begin fighting against sexual harassment retaliation.
Contact a New York Employment Attorney to Discuss Your Sexual Harassment Claim
If you believe that you have been retaliated against after being sexually harassed at work, it’s important that you speak to an experienced sexual harassment attorney as soon as possible. The attorneys at Lipsky Lowe LLP are dedicated advocates of employee rights and have decades of experience successfully handling sexual harassment retaliation claims. Contact Lipsky Lowe LLP today to learn more about your legal options.