How is a harrassment/discrimination case handled?

UPDATED: Dec 2, 2011

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How is a harrassment/discrimination case handled?

I was recently let go from a job because I had been seen on my phone. I had a final written warning 7 months ago and was told that the warning is not considered valid. The manager that caught me has been constantly harassing me at work to the point where I did not want to be there when she was and made me feel inferior to her. I am an openly lesbian employee and to my knowledge, she does not harrass anyone else to the extent that she harrasses me. I have numerous incidents (about 15 within the past year) where this manager has harrassed me. What is the proper course of action?

Asked on December 2, 2011 under Employment Labor Law, Ohio


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

You do not mention what state you are writing from: that, however, is critical information. (You may wish to repost your question.)

Federal law does not protect sexual orientation; that is, under federal law, it would be legal to harass or discriminate against someone because she is a lesbian.

Some states, however, do make it illegal to discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation; for example, New Jersey does, and so, I believe, also do NY and CA. However a great many southern states do not.

If you are in a state which makes it illegal to discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation, you should speak with an employment law attorney to discuss your options.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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