Some people don't enjoy their jobs, while others don't enjoy their co-workers. Working together in a civil environment is not always possible when an employee is instigating conflict with an innocent worker. Workplace bullying in North Carolina comes in many forms. Half the employers in a 2011 survey by a management association reported incidents of bullying in their workplace.
The effects of bullying at work may have long-term effects on health at home, but many workers are not aware of what constitutes bullying and how the North Carolina workers' compensation system recognizes it. Workers' comp is available for injuries and illness caused by workplace health and safety standards. Our Raleigh workers' comp lawyers prepared a list of just a few signs you are being bullied in the workplace:
- You experience anxiety issues the night before going to work. Nausea, cardiovascular complications, and problems sleeping could be the symptoms of early anxiety attacks caused by bullying and harassment at work. Physical distress due to personalities in your work environment is not normal and may cause permanent complications with your health.
- You are excluded from company events. Discrimination still exists today, unfortunately. If your employer or an employee is deliberately keeping you away from meeting information and company news, this may be another tactic of bullying.
- Shouting arguments. There are professional ways of handling work disputes and errors, none of which involve shouting. If you work with someone who constantly yells and screams at you and reports to HR have not helped, a Raleigh workers' comp attorney can review harassment laws with you.
- Criticism. Bullying does not necessarily mean getting physically abusive or verbally disrespectful on a consistent basis. You could be the target of unfounded criticism of your work, appearance, or decorum, which can cause anxiety issues and lack of comfort and safety in the workplace.
- Rumors. Sometimes speculation and gossip develop into rumors about an employee's lifestyle, which can bring attention to false actions and behavior. These rumors could hurt your professional career and reputation--sometimes referred to as defamation of character--and you have rights in these situations.
Don't let anyone else sabotage your career. A Raleigh workers' comp lawyer can explain if and how you would be eligible for benefits, or if your best avenue is a lawsuit directly against the bullying party. If you believe you are the victim of bullying at work, keep a journal of the events that take place. Write a letter to HR and keep a record of their response and actions. There are federal and state laws that apply to harassment.
If you are experiencing any of the situations described above, it is in your best interest to meet with a Raleigh workers' comp lawyer. Workplace bullying does not exclusively apply to how management or other employees with authority treat you, it can be stress that comes from any colleague.