Losing a job is a serious issue for workers everywhere, including those in Michigan. Unfortunately, some employees lose their jobs not for valid reasons, but because of employer retaliation.
A 56-year-old Muslim-American man was awarded one of the largest decisions ever granted in an employment discrimination case by a Detroit federal court jury on Feb. 27. According to the report, the plaintiff had arrived in Michigan more than twenty years ago and became a naturalized citizen. He held a job as a maintenance worker for 17 years with Washtenaw County.
Workers in Michigan may have heard that the Hanford Nuclear Power Reservation in Washington State has fired two employees that made complaints about safety concerns. The second employee was the manager of Environmental and Nuclear Safety, and the Department of Energy-owned plant let her go on Feb. 18.
A police officer who resigned from the Bay City Police Department after he had a confrontation with a bar patron maintains that he is entitled to a hearing before the Bay City Commission. The former officer believes that he was a victim of wrongful termination because he was forced to resign before he was given a hearing as required by a law governing the treatment of veterans in government jobs.
Michigan viewers may be following the actions of television star Nicollette Sheridan who will get another day in court with her former employers: the creator, the producer and the broadcaster of 'Desperate Housewives." Sheridan had sued Marc Cherry, Touchstone and ABC in 2010, but the trial ended in a hung jury.
One of two Genesee County Road Commission employees who alleged racial discrimination accepted a settlement of $185,000 after a trial began on Nov. 15. The other employee's claim was still in progress at the time of the report. Their claims alleged that they were discriminated against because they were two Caucasians who reported that an African-American coworker might have been intoxicated on the job to their African-American supervisors. Other employees apparently witnessed the intoxicated behavior, but they did not report it due to fear of retaliation.
Walmart fired an employee in its Hartland store after he tried to help a woman who was allegedly being assaulted in the store's parking lot. The man, who had only been working at the store for seven weeks, was fired for his involvement in the incident.
During the summer of 2013, a band director who had applied for an open job position with Bad Axe Public Schools filed a lawsuit alleging that he never heard back from the school following what he claims was an earlier wrongful termination that took place in 2008. According to the school district, however, the ex-band director resigned of his own accord.
A Michigan court upheld a controversial right-to-work law that bans union fees as a condition of employment in the state. Employee rights were cited as the reason, but Michigan's heavily unionized work force saw the decision as a political strike against labor unions. The judges split 2-1 on the legality of the measure, a law that saw protests by thousands of union workers at the Capitol.
In a settlement involving a former employee of the city of Flint, Michigan, the city was required to pay $250,000. The case involved a wrongful termination matter. The employee involved filed a lawsuit against the city under the Whistleblower Protection Act after he was terminated for assisting in a state investigation. The employee had worked in the city's financial department.