THE MAGAZINE

Retaliation

The California Court of Appeal has ruled that it is illegal for an employer to fire an employee on suspicion that the worker might report safety violations to state agencies. In the case, another employee had already been fired after reporting such violations. During the plaintiff's termination, the employer said "I am afraid that you will be the next one to report me." The plaintiff filed suit and won. The court noted that taking action against an employee in anticipation of a complaint is no less retaliatory than action taken after the complaint has been made. (Lujan v. Minagar, California Court of Appeal, No. B170438, 2004)

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