What can I do about a hostile work enviornment brought on by my sexual assault?

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What can I do about a hostile work enviornment brought on by my sexual assault?

I am active duty in the coast guard and was sexually assaulted last month. Since then I am now being treated like crap at work. My chain of command is now telling me that I am too much paperwork. Yesterday my command told me to “brace for impact”. I need to get out. I am also getting in trouble for going to medical to see my doctor. Additionally, I am on light duty and they still make me do hard labor jobs. Should I speak with an employment law attorney? In Corpus Christ, TX.

Asked on September 23, 2011 under Employment Labor Law, Texas

Answers:

B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

You should talk to an employment law attorney about your case.  Discrimination cases, hostile work environment, and worker’s compensation retaliation claims tend to be very fact based.  You mention being sexually assaulted and being on light duty, however, you do not mention whether either is related to on-the-job incidents.  If you were assaulted on the job or if you were injured some other way while on the job, you may not be the victim of sex discrimination, but rather of worker’s comp retaliation.  If your injury was not work related, then you may have other claims.  You mention being off from work.  If you applied for protection under the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) and they are discriminating against you for that, that’s a different violation.  Depending on the extent of your trauma associated with the sexual assault, you may qualify for protection under the ADA.  I would like to give you a much more specific answer, but your question poses several different scenarios and applications of the law--depending on the overall facts of your case.  You really need to consult with an employment law attorney.  If your injuries were work related, seek one that also does worker’s comp law so that you get a broader opinion.  Take any documentation with you—including write-ups, requests for leave, and medical documentation.  The more information that you provide the employment law attorney, the better answer they will be able to provide.


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