Q: Would any of this be considered retaliation or just a typical judgment call by my employer?
A few years ago, I reported a coworker for harassment and stalking. After a month, the coworker was eventually fired for a separate complaint from another department. My claim, it turns out, was never investigated or recorded. I didn't find this out until after I was no longer assigned to a project there. I felt that after the harassment incident, I was receiving fewer projects and like I was being pushed out of the company. It wasn't until later that I also found out I was purposely passed over projects because my supervisor thought I might not be able to handle this emotionally. In addition to this, a director in my department admitted to being attracted to me and would get angry with me at work for not responding to him enough or initiating contact. After declining to hang out with him outside of work and connect with him on social media, he seemed me ineligible for further projects there. I'm in Los Angeles and am also a contractor.
The California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) prohibits sexual harassment, and retaliation because you made a good faith report of sexual harassment. Your post is not clear whether the initial complaint would fall into the latter category. More would therefore need to be known.
If you can prove you suffered adverse employment actions because you rebuffed a supervisor's advances, that would be unlawful and a violation of FEHA.
It would be a good idea for you to locate and consult with an experienced employment law attorney as soon as possible to explore your facts and determine your options. I would suggest you look either on this site, or go to www.cela.org, the home page for the California Employment Lawyers Association, an organization whose members are dedicated to the representation of employees against their employers.
Most employment attorneys who practice this area of law offer a free or low cost consultation in the beginning and then, if the matter has merit and value, will usually agree to work on a contingency basis, meaning you can hire an attorney without paying any money until the matter results in a positive outcome for you. Many advance all the costs of the litigation as well. Do not let fear of fees and costs keep you from finding a good attorney.
Good luck to you.
A: It can be a violation of California anti-harassment law if a supervisor grants or withholds employment benefits because a subordinate either accepts or rejects sexual advances. We call that "quid pro quo" sexual harassment. It sounds like you have a supervisor who is getting angry at you because you don't reciprocate his or her advances, and maybe he or she is hurting your career to punish you for that rejection. That could be a violation of anti-harassment law.
A: It is illegal for an employer to retaliate because of a sexual harassment report against a coworker or a supervisor. Contact an employment attorney to discuss your evidence. It will be difficult to prove you were deemed ineligible for promotions, etc. at work, but if you have documentation, you may be able to prove retaliation for refusing your supervisor’s advances. Again, contact an attorney experienced in sexual harassment cases as soon as possible to discuss the evidence in your case.
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