What Can I Do if I am Being Harassed Based on My Race or National Origin?
When we think about workplace harassment, the first thing that usually comes to mind is sexual harassment. But it also can be actionable discrimination if you are being harassed at work based on your race or national origin.
Extreme examples would be the use of the "N" word in the workplace that is not addressed after being reported to management. Other examples include repeated comments in the workplace that are disparaging to your national origin- comments about terrorism to a person of Middle Eastern descent, or about illegal immigration to a Latino employee.
If it is severe and pervasive enough that no reasonable person in your shoes would continue to tolerate it, you may be able to resign and bring a discrimination claim under a theory of "constructive discharge." You should discuss this with an employment lawyer before making that decision, because proving constructive discharge can be challenging.
You do have the right to report the behavior to management and ask for it to be addressed, without fear of retaliation. If you are terminated after making such a report, and can show some causal connection between your complaint and your termination, you may have a claim for wrongful termination.
Learn more here about Massachusetts discrimination laws.
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