Put simply, a hostile work environment is a form of discriminatory harassment in the workplace. Though this is prohibited in New York State and throughout the United States, it is still commonly seen in the workplace. And if you are a victim of this, you may be wondering if your employer is to blame. Continue reading to learn whether your employer is responsible for your hostile work environment and how an experienced New York discrimination lawyer at Bell Law Group can help review your rights.
What laws protect against a hostile work environment?
As an employee, you are part of a protected class that has been given certain rights. More specifically, these rights are protected under federal, state, and local laws. Most notably, there is Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. This protects employees from employment discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, national origin, etc.
In the state, there is the New York State Human Rights Law. This similarly makes it an unlawful discriminatory practice for an employer to refuse to hire, to discharge from employment, or to discriminate against an individual in compensation or terms of conditions or privileges of employment because of an individual’s race, color, religion, sex, national origin, etc.
And locally, there is the New York City Human Rights Law. This is Title 8 of the Administrative Code of the City of New York and is one of the most powerful employment anti-discrimination laws in the United States.
Under what conditions is an employer responsible for a hostile work environment?
According to New York law, you may file a hostile work environment claim against anyone responsible for creating a hostile work environment, including your employer. With this, you may make the following the below argument:
- As an employee, your employer had a duty of care toward you.
- Your employer knew or should have reasonably known about that discriminatory harassment occurring in the workplace.
- Your employer failed to exercise a reasonable duty of care to correct the harassment occurring in the workplace.
- You continued to experience a form of discriminatory harassment in the workplace as a result.
So, if the above argument applies to you, then you must proceed with collecting any relevant information for your hostile work environment claim. Examples of such are as follows:
- Complaints filed with your employer regarding the instances of harassment.
- Photographs and videos of the instances of harassment.
- Witness testimonies regarding the instances of harassment.
- Doctor’s notes and medical bills referencing the physical and mental health treatment needed after such instances of harassment.
For more information, you must reach out to a skilled New York employee rights lawyer. We look forward to hearing from you.