Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 30 of 33

Thread: Workplace discrimination question

  1. #1

    Default Workplace discrimination question

    I was in a meeting the other day at work. It was not a large group, just 3 of us. One of the 3 is an officer of our company and questioned whether or not a certain individual was active in the church. Once it was determined that he was not (deduced by the same person asking the question), he then rhetorically asked the question "Well then why did we hire him?".

    Possibly unbeknownst to him, I am not all that active in the church. Many people know this, and I believe he knows as well (I think he likes to drop little snide reminders to me of how evil I am). At any rate, I am concerned about my employment at this company and I really do think it is possible that I may get fired someday for trumped up reasons, but really because I don't fit the mold of the typical LDS that make up the leadership ranks of this company.

    What should I do to protect myself? I sent myself an email detailing the events of the meeting, but just to myself so I could have it in case I need it someday. I worry that if I talk to HR, I just shine a light on myself and just increase the odds they'll fish for reasons to get rid of me.

    Any advice? For the record, on other occasions I have heard other executives make disparaging remarks about gays, etc. This company is truly stuck in the 1950's.
    Last edited by Mr Bean; 01-28-2018 at 08:41 PM.

  2. #2
    Senior Member originalsocal's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Fullerton, CA
    Posts
    820

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Bean View Post
    I was in a meeting the other day at work. It was not a large group, just 3 of us. One of the 3 is an officer of our company and questioned whether or not a certain individual was active in the church. Once it was determined that he was not (deduced by the same person asking the question), he then rhetorically asked the question "Well then why did we hire him?".

    Possibly unbeknownst to him, I am not all that active in the church. Many people know this, and I believe he knows as well (I think he likes to drop little snide reminders to me of how evil I am). At any rate, I am concerned about my employment at this company and I really do think it is possible that I may get fired someday for trumped up reasons, but really because I don't fit the mold of the typical LDS that make up the leadership ranks of this company.

    What should I do to protect myself? I sent myself an email detailing the events of the meeting, but just to myself so I could have it in case I need it someday. I worry that if I talk to HR, I just shine a light on myself and just increase the odds they'll fish for reasons to get rid of me.

    Any advice? For the record, on other occasions I have heard other executives make disparaging remarks about gays, etc. This company is truly stuck in the 1950's.
    As an HR professional I would tell you that what you are experiencing is not legal. Religion is one of the 12 types of discrimination enforced by the EEOC. (Here in California there are MANY more types, but I digress). His language and behavior, as you describe it, is discrimination based on religion. You are well within your rights to bring this to light. You are legally protected against retaliation, so even if you were to get fired you will most likely be looking at a large sum of money coming your way. Bottom line is that what your boss is doing is not legal. Your company should be placed on notice and HR should investigate this at the very minimum. This is a matter that is not only protecting you, but also your coworkers and the company itself.

  3. #3

    Default

    challenge him to a fight in the parking lot after work.
    Te Occidere Possunt Sed Te Edere Non Possunt Nefas Est.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Katy Lied's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Center of the Salt Lake Valley
    Posts
    8,508

    Default

    Scientologists do this all the time to employees who become declared Suppressive Persons. Employers receive notification from the church that their employee is not in good standing, and then the employer starts documenting how the employee is screwing up. Then the boss and every other employee lie through their teeth about how bad the employee is. Commendations in personnel files disappear overnight. Paperwork is revised and postdated.

  5. #5
    One man.....one pie Moliere's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    The Republic of Tejas
    Posts
    20,767

    Default

    Looks like it’s time to start looking for a job outside of the CoB.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    "Discipleship is not a spectator sport. We cannot expect to experience the blessing of faith by standing inactive on the sidelines any more than we can experience the benefits of health by sitting on a sofa watching sporting events on television and giving advice to the athletes. And yet for some, “spectator discipleship” is a preferred if not primary way of worshipping." -Pres. Uchtdorf

  6. #6

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by originalsocal View Post
    As an HR professional I would tell you that what you are experiencing is not legal. Religion is one of the 12 types of discrimination enforced by the EEOC. (Here in California there are MANY more types, but I digress). His language and behavior, as you describe it, is discrimination based on religion. You are well within your rights to bring this to light. You are legally protected against retaliation, so even if you were to get fired you will most likely be looking at a large sum of money coming your way. Bottom line is that what your boss is doing is not legal. Your company should be placed on notice and HR should investigate this at the very minimum. This is a matter that is not only protecting you, but also your coworkers and the company itself.
    There is almost zero chance the other person in this meeting would stick his neck out for me if he were asked to confirm the events as i described them. If I did come forward, HR would likely interview both of them and both would surely vehemently deny it and it would be my word against 2. Doesn't seem like a fight worth taking up; unless I already have a landing spot ready to move on to. Sounds like it's time to start looking for a new job.

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G930A using Tapatalk

  7. #7
    UofU/BYU mixed marriage Scott R Nelson's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Meridian, ID
    Posts
    798

    Default

    I think what you're doing, documenting it, is about all that you can do for now. I would keep a written copy of the incident reports at home where they're safe. Write down dates and times. Use it as evidence of unlawful termination if/when it comes to that.

    It's too bad that you're working at a place so out of touch with the current world. Have you been there long? How hard will it be to find another job? It sounds to me like there is a good chance they'll start gathering evidence on you if being semi-active in the church is grounds - in their opinion - of being fired. Keep your own notes and bring a lawsuit against them when it happens, if you feel that's what you need to do. At least that will have the effect of the government letting them know that what they're doing is now considered wrong. It might help out others that work there. Meanwhile, keep your resume up to date and start searching privately for another job.


    I went through sort of the opposite situation the last time I worked in Utah. We had an officer of the company who was a return missionary who had turned anti-church. There was a "Black Friday" event where about 20 of us were called into a special meeting and told that we would all be leaving the company starting immediately, then we were treated sort of like criminals after that, not being able to say goodbye to anybody else and being escorted to gather our personal possessions. Many in that group, like me, were obviously active church members.

    Although it was very unpleasant at the time, in hindsight it was the absolute best time that it could have happened, because the high tech industry was begging for good people back then. I picked the top four companies that I thought I would like to work for, got interviews with all of them, and got job offers from all of them. The only hard part was having to move to California, which I had been trying to figure out how to do for years. I'm way better off now than if I had been able to stay at that company.

    I sort of put together an e-mail newsletter of former employees of that company where we compared experiences. Some people had unkind things to say about some of the people running the old company and eventually officers of the company got copies and read it. The president of the company contacted an officer of the new company I was working for and they asked me to end it, which I did. It was pretty pathetic, but once it started to affect others where I was working I "ceased and desisted".

    A few other people left that company in the following months specifically because of what happened to us, wondering who could be next. One of those, who was a manager, said that he had told them (and later me) that he felt we had enough evidence for an unlawful termination lawsuit if we wanted to go that route. None of us did, because we all had better jobs just a few months later.

  8. #8
    Royal Rooter Green Monstah's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Up from third base to Huntington
    Posts
    9,848

    Default

    As long as you have some emergency cash on hand, I'd report it. If you ever get fired for fake reasons, you can play the retaliation card. As long as you can float yourself for a few months to find a new job, I don't think there's a ton of downside.
    Jesus wants me for a sunbeam.

    "Cog dis is a bitch." -James Patterson

  9. #9
    The dude abides Jeff Lebowski's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    The heart of the UC
    Posts
    47,258

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Green Monstah View Post
    As long as you have some emergency cash on hand, I'd report it. If you ever get fired for fake reasons, you can play the retaliation card. As long as you can float yourself for a few months to find a new job, I don't think there's a ton of downside.
    Easy for you to say.
    "There is no creature more arrogant than a self-righteous libertarian on the web, am I right? Those folks are just intolerable."
    "It's no secret that the great American pastime is no longer baseball. Now it's sanctimony." -- Guy Periwinkle, The Nix.
    "Juilliardk N I ibuprofen Hyu I U unhurt u" - creekster

  10. #10

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Green Monstah View Post
    As long as you have some emergency cash on hand, I'd report it. If you ever get fired for fake reasons, you can play the retaliation card. As long as you can float yourself for a few months to find a new job, I don't think there's a ton of downside.
    I think this is bad advice. If you have ownership/management that is acting unethically/illegally, find a better job and move on. You might be able to get the attorneys to force them to keep you employed, but do you want to work in a place where there was bad behavior to start and now add animosity?
    Last edited by snowcat; 01-29-2018 at 08:36 AM.
    One of the grandest benefits of the enlightenment was the realization that our moral sense must be based on the welfare of living individuals, not on their immortal souls. Honest and passionate folks can strongly disagree regarding spiritual matters, so it's imperative that we not allow such considerations to infringe on the real happiness of real people.

    Woot

    I believe religion has much inherent good and has born many good fruits.
    SU

  11. #11

    Default

    If it were me, I'd get an app that records everything, then save important conversations. I'm not sure what state you're in, but that's legal in Utah.

  12. #12

    Default

    Pretty dumb thing for an exec to say. I would keep notes, including names of other employees that could corroborate your story. You could make an accusation, but chances are that they could easily fire you or make your life miserable and find reasons other than religion to state why they're doing it. Most companies are in business to make money not provide jobs to Mormons and exclude non-Mormons. If nothing else is going wrong in your job, I wouldn't worry much about getting fired even if they come to find you are not active LDS.

  13. #13

    Default

    PS, you seem to be describing a company that's at least >20 companies, ie multiple officers of the company, separate HR function, etc. I'm kind of shocked any company that large would have a hiring plan of only hiring active LDS. My company never got bigger than six employees, and I'm based in Utah County, and it would have constrained me significantly to have a plan like that in place. Weird.

  14. #14
    Royal Rooter Green Monstah's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Up from third base to Huntington
    Posts
    9,848

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Lebowski View Post
    Easy for you to say.
    What makes it easy is that I've seen people who were able to get really large settlements for retaliation. I've also seen people labeled "untouchable" because they filed complaints, and they were able to coast along for years collecting a fantastic paycheck and worrying very little that they'd be let go.

    The key is having the ability to live for a few months without a job (still susceptible to non-performance layoffs...and these folks just might be stupid enough to retaliate).
    Last edited by Green Monstah; 01-29-2018 at 07:48 AM.
    Jesus wants me for a sunbeam.

    "Cog dis is a bitch." -James Patterson

  15. #15
    The dude abides Jeff Lebowski's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    The heart of the UC
    Posts
    47,258

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Green Monstah View Post
    What makes it easy is that I've seen people who were able to get really large settlements for retaliation. I've also seen people labeled "untouchable" because they filed complaints, and they were able to coast along for years collecting a fantastic paycheck and worrying very little that they'd be let go.

    The key is having the ability to live for a few months without a job (still susceptible to non-performance layoffs...and these folks just might be stupid enough to retaliate).
    So a guy with zero skin in the game knows some people who were able to successfully sue their employers? OK, I am convinced. Nothing could possibly go wrong.
    "There is no creature more arrogant than a self-righteous libertarian on the web, am I right? Those folks are just intolerable."
    "It's no secret that the great American pastime is no longer baseball. Now it's sanctimony." -- Guy Periwinkle, The Nix.
    "Juilliardk N I ibuprofen Hyu I U unhurt u" - creekster

  16. #16
    The dude abides Jeff Lebowski's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    The heart of the UC
    Posts
    47,258

    Default

    I am trying to imagine a career where my job security and pay were not a result of my performance or actual worth, but a lawsuit I fired against my bosses. Sounds like a soul-crushing existence. Not surprised a lawyer suggested it.
    "There is no creature more arrogant than a self-righteous libertarian on the web, am I right? Those folks are just intolerable."
    "It's no secret that the great American pastime is no longer baseball. Now it's sanctimony." -- Guy Periwinkle, The Nix.
    "Juilliardk N I ibuprofen Hyu I U unhurt u" - creekster

  17. #17
    Royal Rooter Green Monstah's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Up from third base to Huntington
    Posts
    9,848

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Lebowski View Post
    So a guy with zero skin in the game knows some people who were able to successfully sue their employers? OK, I am convinced. Nothing could possibly go wrong.
    If that's the standard, then only one course of action is risk-free: Mr. Bean needs to start attending his Sunday meetings regularly, and probably procure a temple recommend.

    In the course of my employment, I deal with these issues regularly. I don't think it's coincidence that the two people who are encouraging reporting are the two who likely deal with these issues on a regular basis.
    Jesus wants me for a sunbeam.

    "Cog dis is a bitch." -James Patterson

  18. #18

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by jay santos View Post
    PS, you seem to be describing a company that's at least >20 companies, ie multiple officers of the company, separate HR function, etc. I'm kind of shocked any company that large would have a hiring plan of only hiring active LDS. My company never got bigger than six employees, and I'm based in Utah County, and it would have constrained me significantly to have a plan like that in place. Weird.
    This company has 700+ employees and most certainly does not have an "lds only" policy as there are many non-mormons that work here. This particular exec is just a dink and says stupid things, but has a lot of power here over promotions and firing. He could simply tell the ceo he doesn't like me (without stating anything illegal) and could easily get rid of me.

    His antics are not representative of all, but there are some just like him.

  19. #19

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Lebowski View Post
    I am trying to imagine a career where my job security and pay were not a result of my performance or actual worth, but a lawsuit I fired against my bosses. Sounds like a soul-crushing existence. Not surprised a lawyer suggested it.
    Easy for you to say. You're not a lawyer.

  20. #20

    Default

    Do you like the job? If not, go hunting for something else. Sounds like the corporate culture is oppressive and you won't ever fit in there, regardless of how successful an HR claim and/or lawsuit may be. I don't want to discount the value of those things, they can be incredibly beneficial to a workplace environment. But often the main beneficiaries are those who come afterward while costing the complainer advancement opportunities as well as significant emotional and/or financial distress.

    Life is too short to deal with that kind of nonsense. Vote with your feet.

  21. #21

    Default

    Also, Mr. Bean are you a BYU or Utah fan?

  22. #22
    Royal Rooter Green Monstah's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Up from third base to Huntington
    Posts
    9,848

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Lebowski View Post
    I am trying to imagine a career where my job security and pay were not a result of my performance or actual worth, but a lawsuit I fired against my bosses. Sounds like a soul-crushing existence. Not surprised a lawyer suggested it.
    Reporting it doesn't mean you file suit. An employer with 700 employees should have processes in place where you can report this type of misconduct. If the HR department has functioning brain cells they'll say, "Hey, executive, don't say stupid shit like this." And if he's not a complete moron, he'll agree.

    Mr. Bean could also report this anonymously, or have a face to face with HR under the guise of "I don't want anyone to get in trouble, but can we encourage folks to avoid these type of conversations?"
    Jesus wants me for a sunbeam.

    "Cog dis is a bitch." -James Patterson

  23. #23

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by YOhio View Post
    Do you like the job? If not, go hunting for something else. Sounds like the corporate culture is oppressive and you won't ever fit in there, regardless of how successful an HR claim and/or lawsuit may be. I don't want to discount the value of those things, they can be incredibly beneficial to a workplace environment. But often the main beneficiaries are those who come afterward while costing the complainer advancement opportunities as well as significant emotional and/or financial distress.

    Life is too short to deal with that kind of nonsense. Vote with your feet.
    Byu fan through and through, I was 12 years old and in person when Ty took down Miami. It's in my DNA now, though I find provo somewhere below #7000 on my list of places I would like to live.

    I have worked at this company for 16 years and was my first job out of byu. We were recently sold to a private equity firm and things are definitely different now. I actually like my job and get compensated above what I would likely get elsewhere so really don't want to leave.

    I think I'll keep quiet for now but will keep records in case something happens.

    Thanks everyone for the advice.

  24. #24
    Royal Rooter Green Monstah's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Up from third base to Huntington
    Posts
    9,848

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by YOhio View Post
    Do you like the job? If not, go hunting for something else. Sounds like the corporate culture is oppressive and you won't ever fit in there, regardless of how successful an HR claim and/or lawsuit may be. I don't want to discount the value of those things, they can be incredibly beneficial to a workplace environment. But often the main beneficiaries are those who come afterward while costing the complainer advancement opportunities as well as significant emotional and/or financial distress.

    Life is too short to deal with that kind of nonsense. Vote with your feet.
    What would you do if he likes his job? I imagine in the course of your career you've dealt with these type of issues regularly.
    Jesus wants me for a sunbeam.

    "Cog dis is a bitch." -James Patterson

  25. #25
    Faith crisis consultant SeattleUte's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    18,572

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Katy Lied View Post
    Scientologists do this all the time to employees who become declared Suppressive Persons. Employers receive notification from the church that their employee is not in good standing, and then the employer starts documenting how the employee is screwing up. Then the boss and every other employee lie through their teeth about how bad the employee is. Commendations in personnel files disappear overnight. Paperwork is revised and postdated.

    Scientology=Mormonism
    When a true genius appears, you can know him by this sign: that all the dunces are in a confederacy against him.

    --Jonathan Swift

  26. #26
    Faith crisis consultant SeattleUte's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    18,572

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by YOhio View Post
    Do you like the job? If not, go hunting for something else. Sounds like the corporate culture is oppressive and you won't ever fit in there, regardless of how successful an HR claim and/or lawsuit may be. I don't want to discount the value of those things, they can be incredibly beneficial to a workplace environment. But often the main beneficiaries are those who come afterward while costing the complainer advancement opportunities as well as significant emotional and/or financial distress.

    Life is too short to deal with that kind of nonsense. Vote with your feet.
    This is great advice.
    When a true genius appears, you can know him by this sign: that all the dunces are in a confederacy against him.

    --Jonathan Swift

  27. #27
    Senior Member originalsocal's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Fullerton, CA
    Posts
    820

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Bean View Post
    There is almost zero chance the other person in this meeting would stick his neck out for me if he were asked to confirm the events as i described them. If I did come forward, HR would likely interview both of them and both would surely vehemently deny it and it would be my word against 2. Doesn't seem like a fight worth taking up; unless I already have a landing spot ready to move on to. Sounds like it's time to start looking for a new job.

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G930A using Tapatalk
    Yes. Looking for a new job is definitely what you should do. I will say, however, in my experience it's rare that you would be the first to complain. Bosses that like this think they can say and do anything they want. Such power dynamic bullshit. More and more people are getting sick of it and speaking out. I understand your hesitancy, but you might just be doing something that saves your company and the people who work there, not to mention teaching your boss that douchebaggery is not good for business.

  28. #28
    It is NOT a monkey! creekster's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    The Creek
    Posts
    21,431

    Default

    Two thoughts:

    1. Litigation should never be taken lightly or with the expectation of an easy victory. It is expensive, time consuming and emotionally difficult and it takes on a life of its own. It can be necessary, but I lean to the Yohio view of its worth.

    2. This is minor but I hope that when you say you email records to yourself you are not doing so on the company servers or with your work account. Keeping a log/diary of events is a great idea. Using the company server to email it to yourself is not a great follow-up, in my mind.
    PLesa excuse the tpyos.

  29. #29

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Bean View Post
    I have worked at this company for 16 years and was my first job out of byu. We were recently sold to a private equity firm and things are definitely different now. I actually like my job and get compensated above what I would likely get elsewhere so really don't want to leave.
    Liking your work is a huge blessing that can't be overlooked. I'd advise against convincing yourself that you're overcompensated, let the marketplace do that for you in a job hunt. You may be surprised. Being at the same place for that long can bring a certain level of comfort and acceptance of bad behavior, particularly if you accept that you wouldn't be paid as much elsewhere.

    Regardless, good luck!

  30. #30

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Green Monstah View Post
    What would you do if he likes his job? I imagine in the course of your career you've dealt with these type of issues regularly.
    I'd still go on the hunt. It's easier to get a new and satisfying job than fix a broken corporate culture from a powerless position.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •