Why You Can’t Retaliate Against Whistleblowers

An employee reported his boss for (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) violations and we started investigating. We found the violation wasn’t serious, and only a small corrective action was taken. However, the boss came to me with a diary he found in the employee’s office. This journal contained some thoughts about his female coworkers that would trigger all sorts of #MeToo issues if they were read aloud at a staff meeting. The employee, as far as I know, has never behaved inappropriately. The boss wants to fire him, insisting this journal proves the employee is a sexual harasser and discriminator. It makes me nervous. Can we terminate him for this?

To read my answer, click here: Why You Can’t Retaliate Against Whistleblowers

Leave your own in the comments!

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3 thoughts on “Why You Can’t Retaliate Against Whistleblowers

  1. Obviously both the manager and the employee who complained don’t get along well in the workplace. For all you know that whistleblowing report was retaliation for the manager knowing about that journal, especially since the manager knew exactly where to find it.
    But from a HR view this incident needs further investigation plus both need to sit down for a written documentation of what each did wrong in terms of proper work ethics, plus a discussion of how to co-work with each other. HR has their work cut out for them in this situation.

    1. Honestly my first thought was that the manager planted it as retaliation!

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