Workplace discrimination is an unfortunate reality that some individuals face.
If you find yourself in a situation where you believe workplace discrimination occurred, it is important to approach the matter systematically.
1. Document everything
Start by meticulously documenting instances of discrimination. Keep a detailed record of dates, times, locations and individuals involved. Be specific about the discriminatory behavior you experienced, noting any comments, actions or policies that support your claim. Collect evidence, such as emails, memos or witness statements, to strengthen your case.
2. Know your company policies
Review your company’s policies on discrimination. Familiarize yourself with the procedures for reporting such incidents. Many organizations have specific channels for lodging complaints, and following these internal processes is often a necessary step before taking legal action. Understanding the company’s stance on discrimination and knowing the appropriate avenues for addressing the issue will help you navigate the situation effectively.
3. Seek support from colleagues
Connect with colleagues who potentially witnessed the discriminatory actions. Gather statements from those willing to support your case. Strength often lies in numbers, and having multiple perspectives can bolster the credibility of your claims. Make sure to maintain a professional demeanor and focus on the facts when discussing the matter with your coworkers.
4. Consult human resources
Schedule a meeting with your company’s human resources department to discuss your concerns. Present your documented evidence and articulate your experiences without making accusations. HR is responsible for addressing workplace issues, and involving them early in the process demonstrates your commitment to resolving the matter internally. Keep records of your interactions with HR for future reference.
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission received 73,485 new discrimination charges in 2022. For people experiencing discrimination in the workplace, taking a proactive approach can help build a solid case.