Are Whistleblowers Susceptible to Workplace Discrimination?

For someone who is considering coming forward with information regarding their employer’s poor business dealings, the idea can come with a number of reservations on the part of an employee. If you have witnessed or participated in something that is of concern, whistleblowing may play a key role in moving forward. For many considering this option, it’s valid to have concern over how you may experience discrimination in the workplace as a result of coming forward. Retaliation is likely to be the most common form of discrimination you experience. Despite there being protections in place for whistleblowers, the fear of poor treatment in the workplace as a result is valid. Contact an attorney to review your case and protect your rights throughout the process. 

What Is a Whistleblower?

A whistleblower may be considered a person who comes forward with information regarding their employer that is damaging. A whistleblower may come forward for a number of reasons:

  • Their employer is violating laws
  • Their business dealings puts public health in danger
  • Their business dealings puts public safety at risk
  • Unethical business practices
  • Corruption

Some high profile examples of whistleblowers include:

  • Mark Felt (Watergate)
  • Linda Tripp (Lewinsky Scandal)
  • Sharon Watkins, Cynthia Cooper, Coleen Rowley (Enron)
  • Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha (Flint, Michigan)

Despite protections, whistleblowers put everything on the line when they shed light on corruption and poor business dealings. They play a key role in history because, as a result, they instill change and action in companies and government. A whistleblower attorney can help provide a whistleblower with support and advocacy during the process of taking action. Not only can they provide you with legal representation, they can help you in understanding the path that lies ahead. 

Retaliation

As an employee, reporting information regarding unethical business dealings on the part of your employer can be scary. If you are still employed by the company, you may have concerns that you will be treated poorly if your employer were to learn of the disclosures you have made. Unfortunately, if your employer has been behaving unethically, there’s no telling what repercussions you may face in the workplace. Retaliation is a form of workplace discrimination that occurs when an employee is mistreated by their employer. Examples of workplace retaliation include:

  • Demotions
  • Dismissals
  • Poor Performance Evaluations
  • Harassment 

It’s likely that you will be treated poorly or unfairly in retaliation for whistleblowing. Despite there being a variety of federal and state laws in place to prevent retaliation in the workplace for whistleblowers, concern that there may be consequences is valid. 

If you have come forward and believe you experienced retaliation as a result, you will need to prove that there is a link between blowing the whistle and the retaliation you have experienced. Begin by gathering as much evidence as possible to prove this to be the case. Keeping a record throughout is key. It may be of use to contact a lawyer, like a whistleblower retaliation claim lawyer in Washington, DC from Eric Siegel Law, for representation to help protect your rights during this stressful and difficult time. 

For more information regarding whistleblowing or how you may be impacted by coming forward, contact an attorney who has experience in this area of practice. Not only may they be able to represent you as a whistleblower, they may be able to help protect your rights in the workplace. 

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