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How to file a discrimination complaint with your HR department

Despite the many federal and state laws in place to protect against it, discrimination in the workplace remains a major problem. This can appear in any company, regardless of size, location or industry. As an employee, you should always keep your eyes out for instances of discrimination, as this is against the law.

If you have reason to believe you've been the victim of workplace discrimination, here are the steps you can take to file a complaint with your HR department:

  • Read your employee handbook: It's here that you'll find more information on discrimination, as well as what you can do to file a complaint
  • Create a written report: You should provide this to the HR department while keeping a copy for yourself.
  • Collect evidence: Any evidence related to the discrimination, such as an email or text message from a supervisor, should be saved for future use. You can also share this with the HR department.
  • Obtain witness statements: If a coworker witnessed an act of discrimination, obtain a statement from this person if they're willing to comply.
  • Ask to have a conversation: It's often necessary to speak with an HR manager in person to explain the situation and better understand the steps they're taking.

If you file a formal discrimination complaint and realize it's going nowhere, take a step back and reassess your situation.

Once you better understand how the HR department is handling your complaint, you can turn your attention to your legal rights. This will help you take additional steps to protect yourself and hold your employer accountable.

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