While women have been a major part of the Michigan workforce for decades, there are still industries and workplaces where men make up the majority of the employees.
Unfortunately, women who work in male-dominated industries are often subjected to sexual harassment and other forms of workplace discrimination.
Managers who acted like “fraternity brothers”
In a recent example, a woman in Holland, Michigan, has filed a lawsuit against her former employer for allegedly firing her after she complained about the “bro culture” there. While working for the employer, the plaintiff was one of the few women in her department. She mostly worked with male engineers and other workers. The management above the plaintiff was all male.
In her lawsuit, she compared managers’ conduct to “fraternity brothers.” Her managers and supervisors repeatedly urged her to pretend not to understand something and ask the male engineers to “explain the concept” to help them feel better about working with her.
After working at the company for about a year, she complained about the “bro culture” to her direct supervisor. The company fired her shortly after that conversation. She has since gotten a new job but is seeking compensation for past and future losses she suffered due to her termination, which she contends was retaliation for challenging the male-dominated culture.
Whistleblower retaliation is against the law
Employers in Michigan cannot fire you for alerting them to gender discrimination or any form of illegal discrimination, for that matter. This is called retaliation, and if it has happened to you, you could be entitled to significant compensation for the harm to your career and lost income.