Even though it is against the law for employers to retaliate against their employees, it is unfortunately common. And many reports in recent years say it is especially frequent in large tech companies, such as Amazon, Microsoft and Google.
These reports mostly came from anonymous employees. And that is understandable, considering the retaliation they might already face. However, one Google employee has made her statements about experiencing severe retaliation public.
Google employee quits because of retaliation
The name Claire Stapleton is not new to the news. She was one of the Google employees who led the charge that called for the company to change their policies on workplace harassment. She states that Google publicly applauded her for leading the strike.
However, as CNBC News reports, Stapleton claims she experienced continual retaliation at the company after the strike. And on June 5, she quit her position as YouTube’s marketing manager to escape retaliation including:
- Managers demoting her from her position
- Managers forcing her to take medical leave without sickness
Google says they investigated Stapleton’s claims and found no evidence.
Resignation is often a goal of retaliation
Unfair employers often engage in retaliation to punish employees in some way. What Stapleton experienced is common. However, retaliation is often subtle so that employers can avoid legal consequences. It might slowly build up and include:
- Purposeful exclusion from meetings or office activities
- Employers badmouthing an employee to other employees
- Reductions in pay or hours over time
Retaliation is like a form of revenge. And employers often retaliate to force employees to quit, since their ability to terminate them is restricted in situations like this.
Employees have the right to demand better policies
The National Labor Relations Act gives employees the right to strike and demand that employers change unfair labor practices. And employees also have the right to a workplace that is free from harassment or retaliation, especially if they engage in a legal strike.
It is important for employees to understand their rights. When they know their rights, they can stand up to injustice and retaliation in the workplace. And if retaliation does not stop, then they will also know when they have grounds to take legal action against their employer.