Although every employer should be well aware of the laws that impact their company, it is still common for many businesses to actively enforce illegal policies. Therefore, it is up to each employee to keep an eye out for these blatant issues, and it is vital to take steps to stop this behavior. After all, if your company has an illegal policy that is detrimental to customers and your co-workers, it is important to blow the whistle in order to protect everyone who has the potential to be hurt either financially or physically by the policy in question.
If you see any misconduct, dishonest or illegal activity in your place of work, it is your moral obligation to expose the wrongdoing. Whistleblowing can be done within your company or you can take it outside of the company and approach regulators or the law. You can also air your concerns to the media.
There is an inherent danger to exposing corruption though because you would be naming people you know are already doing something illegal. There is nothing to stop them from harming you to deter or prevent you from following through on your allegations. Enlist the expertise of a whistleblower law firm to assist you in exposing illegal practices.
Say No To These:
1. False Timekeeping –
Some companies have strict rules about timekeeping that will prevent employees from receiving overtime pay, but this does not mean that your boss will be okay with you leaving once you have your 40 hours in for the week. In fact, there are several companies that encourage people to work during their own time. This is illegal, and you should not allow yourself to be sucked into this situation.
2. Forgeries –
Going through a file audit can be very stressful for a company of any size, especially if they discover that some of their files are missing important paperwork or signatures. Instead of being honest about the file issues, some companies will instruct their employees to forge the necessary documents. However, for legal and moral reasons, this is something that you should never tolerate.
3. Sexual Harassment –
Some companies create a work environment that does not take issues such as sexual harassment seriously. Even if this does not directly impact you, it is important to take a stand to protect the rights of your co-workers, especially if someone is dealing with retaliation as the result of reporting sexual harassment.
4. Fraudulent Reporting –
At some point in your career, you might be asked to alter the numbers on a report that is going to be given to investors or even the government. Although this might seem like the best way to protect the company, it actually creates false expectations, and this can end up causing a ripple effect through the stock market that could have a negative impact on the economy. Therefore, you should never knowingly provide false information in a company report.
5. Demoting Employees for Taking a Stand –
A common practice among businesses is to demote employees who are considered to be an issue. Although this can be legitimate if the employee keeps making mistakes, it is not acceptable if this process is used to penalize an individual who presents a potential liability risk for the company. Unfortunately, the demotion process often causes these employees to quit before they can take a stand.
Sitting back and doing nothing about the illegal actions of your employer will make you borderline complicit if these policies cause serious harm in the future. Therefore, it is always best to do the right thing by telling the truth about any serious legal infractions. Make sure you have an attorney before you move forward in order to protect your legal rights.
Debbie Nguyen is a freelance blogger in the greater Atlanta area. Goldberg Kohn Ltd is a whistleblower law firm helping to pave the way for truth and our legal rights.
Photo Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/isaacmao/146819858/