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When are workers protected from retaliation?

| Nov 16, 2020 | Employment Law

It is important that people in Iowa are able to work in order to provide for themselves and their families. To help ensure that all people are given the same opportunities there are many laws that employers must follow. There are also many laws and regulations that protect people from being injured at work or from being harassed which makes it difficult for them to complete their job tasks. These are all designed to protect the worker while at work and it is important they are upheld.

Many times it is difficult for the authorities to know when these types of laws and regulations are being broken though. The various regulatory agencies rely on the reports of the workers at the company who are either the victims or witnesses to the type of behavior that leads to violations of the law. When they do come forward though, it will most likely upset the employer though. Workers may fear retaliation for their actions, but retaliating against employees is illegal.

When employees are protected from retaliation

Employees are not protected from all types of retaliation though. The retaliation must be the result of the employee participating in a protected activity. These protected activities include, but are not limited to:

  • Filing a complaint or being a witness in an investigation with the EEOC
  • Complaining to supervisors about discrimination or harassment
  • Resisting sexual harassment or helping another employee resist it
  • Refusing to follow directives that would lead to harassment or illegal activity
  • Requesting accommodations for a disability or religion

These are just some of the reasons that employees in Iowa are protected from retaliation though. If an employee is retaliated against for these types of activities, they may be entitled to compensation for the damages they suffer as a result. These are very fact-specific cases though and the compensation depends on the types of damages they suffer. Experienced attorneys understand what constitutes retaliation and may be able to guide one through the process.