Protecting Whistleblowers & The Injured

What should I do if I face retaliation after whistleblowing?

On Behalf of | Feb 21, 2023 | Whistleblower

The government encourages whistleblowers to come forward and report violations freely. However, some workers might hesitate to do so because of retaliation in the workplace.

Some forms of retaliation can seem more subtle than others, such as intentionally uninviting you to important meetings or making hints that you should quit.

Whether forceful or not, these actions can violate your rights, warranting you to file a complaint.

How to file a complaint

Any employee or worker should file a written complaint with the Chief Human Rights Referee at the Office of Public Hearings (OPH).

Fortunately, you can easily access the complaint form online at the Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities (CHRO) website. Additionally, you can go directly to the OPH to get a printed form.

Also, ensure that you file a complaint not exceeding 90 days from the incident of retaliation. If you miss this deadline, they might dismiss your complaint.

What happens next?

After filing your complaint, a Human Rights Referee will take your case and hold an initial conference with all involved parties and their lawyers. During this conference, the referee will also explain the process and deadlines both parties must comply with until the hearing.

You will receive a hearing schedule set around seven to nine months after filing your complaint. After the hearing’s conclusion, both parties can file written arguments with evidence linked to the incident. Then, the referee will issue their decision based on the trial and provided information.

Receiving a favorable decision

If the referee decides that retaliation did happen, you can receive the following:

  • Your job back
  • Lost income and benefits
  • Lawyer fees
  • Compensation for other damages, such as emotional or mental stress

Whistleblowers should not experience workplace harassment or retaliation for telling the truth. In these complicated situations, the law can protect you.

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