Looking to be offended.

Question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about diversity: Ordinarily, I have not heard anything the least bit derogatory in our corner. Do you think my coworker and I should be concerned about this, or should we just ignore it

Our unit recently had diversity/inclusion training in January. Until that day, it seems all 4 of us coworkers sitting in sort of a corner arrangement got along ok. Since that afternoon, it seems that one of the female coworkers is listening more intently to all conversations in our area. Our unit is so busy that we do not have much time for casual conversation anyway. Ordinarily, I have not heard anything the least bit derogatory in our corner. Do you think my coworker and I should be concerned about this, or should we just ignore it?

read more

Immature Racist Remarks

Question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about racist remarks such as “What ghetto store did you work at?”, “Do all people in the ghetto know that they live in the ghetto?”

I have worked for a major retailer for over 17 years and I have enjoyed my time with the company until I moved to Arizona. I have a co-worker who is constantly making racial remarks like “What ghetto store did you work at”, “Do all people in the ghetto know that they live in the ghetto”, “I guess I’ll go drop the Cosby’s off at the pool”, “Don’t you feel like you work in little Mexico?” The list goes on and on. I am fed up.

read more

Falsely Accussed Of A Racial Slur

Question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about accused of racist slur.

A coworker (new employee, who has not made probation period, falsely accused me of making a racial slur to him. It is being investigated by HR, and I am off work on paid status. Can I be terminated for this?

Signed, I Didn’t

Dear I Didn’t:

It is understandable that when one is placed on leave that your organization takes accusations of racial matters seriously. HR’s investigation should determine if the accusation has substance. If it finds you guilty, you could be disciplined and/or fired. However, you have a right to defend yourself and if you are heavily disciplined, penalized or fired, and you are firm in your belief that you that the accusation is false, you can seek the help of an attorney.

read more

Coworker Is Causing Me Anxiety And Pain

Question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about: She claimed that another employee heard me say that I “I hate minorities.”

Six months ago I asked my coworker if she could “Please help a customer that had been waiting a while?” I would have helped the customer but my arms were full of merchandise that I was ticketing, and she was not busy at the time. She was so angry that I asked her to “Please help the customer” when she was done.

She came back to where I was placing the merchandise and leaned over me and yelled telling me that she would have helped the customer; she said, “I didn’t need to ask her and then proceeded to go into our boss’ office and call me a racist.” She claimed that another employee heard me say that I “I hate minorities.” So when my boss questioned this, the other employee of course said I didn’t say it because I DID NOT say it.

read more

Boss Bringing Up Religion During Evaluation

Question To Ask the Workplace Doctors about her/his religion.

Is it against the law for a boss to ask me if I am a Christian, And do I believe in Jesus, during a yearly review?

Signed, Am I ???

Dear Am I ???:

The important thing for you is not to think of this only in terms of the law, but of a boss-employee relationship. Don’t assume that the question is intended to do you harm. Likely it is well motivated. However, you can candidly respond to your boss, “Thank you for asking. I’m sure you mean well by asking, but I’m here to work and I will do my best whether I am a Christian or not.”

read more

What If I Am Discriminated Against?

Question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about interns and discrimination.

What if a new workforce intern gets dirty looks and ignored at work, and they are new on the job, and they know they are part of the Workforce Investment Act Economic Stimulus Training Program. What should they do?

Signed, Discriminated

Dear Discriminated:

Get over it. Dirty looks and ignored? I guess it is possible to be ignored part of the day and get dirty looks the rest, and I can empathize with your feeling of not being welcomed and wanted. However, might it not be better to patiently soak up all the training available than to see yourself as victim?

read more

Complain to HR About Racist Remark?

Question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about being offended at racist remarks:

I am white. I have family members and friends who are of various races. Recently a co-worker and manager made some racist remarks in my presence and one commented that I wouldn’t be offended because I am white. I was stunned and did not say anything at the time, but I was extremely offended. Am I justified in complaining to HR about this?

Signed, Offended

Dear Offended:

Based upon what you say happened, you would be justified in reporting the remarks to HR. The actual decision to do so may not be so easy. It most likely will depend upon the nature of the remarks, your relationship with the people who made the remarks and the policy of your company about such situations. I realize that some people might think you should certainly report such a thing, but I think the reality of the work situation should also be considered. For example, if you have had a good working relationship with your coworker and manager and they have always shown themselves to be positive, unbiased and ethical people, if this is the first time you have ever heard them say anything of this nature, and if the remark did not indicate they have acted in a biased way in their work, you may want not want to escalate it to the point that the coworker and manager would be disciplined or lose their jobs over it.

read more

Office of Manager Is Rudely Invaded by Subordinate

Question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about a rude subordinate: A manager of two units finds his head of one unit fails to enforce reprimand of this individual. What should the manager do?

I am a manager in a department of a large international organization. My Department is divided in to two units. Recently an employee from the other unit came to my office and was looking for something pertaining to a common project that both units are working on. He was looking through boxes right next to my desk. I asked him what he was looking for and he mumbled something and left. My employee, who was also in the office, made a comment, “What’s wrong with him?”I responded, I don’t know, “It’s kinda rude to come in to someone’s office, go through things on their desk and not say a word”

read more

Diversity in the Workplace

Question to Ask the Workplace Doctor from someone in HR about a complaint from an employee feeling exclude due to language:  She mainly states she feel left out. Note: She is an attractive girl in an enviable job. My question is: how can I address this issue with staff about how their actions can stir a perception of discrimination.

I am in Human Resources and work for a company that is 78% Hispanic and 76% female. I had a white female complain that she feels left out among the other females in the office. She says they talk in and out of Spanish when she is around; don’t include her in social activities. She doesn’t come straight out and say they are discriminating against her, but I’m getting the impression this is how she is feeling. She says they haven’t said anything specific about her being white. She mainly states she feel left out. Note: She is an attractive girl in an enviable job. My question is: how can I address this issue with staff about how their actions can stir a perception of discrimination. What tips can I include in our company newsletter about diversity and cultural awareness?

read more

Racism

Question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about racist remarks by a coworker: Should I take it up with my immediate supervisor in private? Should I go ahead & send that letter to our VP? I’ve been nice & let it go, but it’s time to get her terminated.

I have a co-worker who sits right beside me in my office. I’ve heard her make racist remarks when she gets angry. She has made comments about sending Asians back on a ship, sending immigrants back to their home country since they know no English, & calling an Asian friend of mine a racial slur. I’ve been nice & let it go, but it’s time to get her terminated. I have a letter set up to send to our VP of Human Resources. She’s a nice person when she’s in a calm mood, but when her mood changes some of the stuff that comes out of her mouth can be offensive. Should I take it up with my immediate supervisor in private? Should I go ahead & send that letter to our VP? It’s a shame because I do get along with her, but…………it’s time for her to go. There’s no place for that stuff!

read more