Despite knowing that you did what was right, it can be easy to regret taking steps to blow the whistle if you face retaliation in the aftermath.
Unfortunately, you are not alone in feeling this way, either. In fact, up to half of all workplace discrimination grievances seen by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission revolve around retaliation.
Forms of retaliation
NPR discusses the illegal phenomenon of retaliation against whistleblowers. Despite the fact that it is illegal, that does not keep employers from lashing out against employees that do everything right. Even your fellow coworkers might start to lash out against you in order to display their loyalty and try to get in the manager’s good graces.
In many cases, managers and bosses will not outright fire you because they know they can get into more immediate legal trouble for that. However, they might go out of their way to ensure that you never have an easy time at work again.
This can include demoting you, giving you unfairly poor evaluations, excluding you from your colleagues, giving you an unreasonable amount of work or assignments you find disagreeable, or even physically or verbally abusing you.
Trouble proving whistleblower retaliation
It is sometimes difficult to prove that you are suffering from mistreatment specifically due to whistleblowing, too, as many employers are aware that this is illegal and go out of their way to obscure their true reason for mistreating you.
You may want to stick around despite this, perhaps because you love the job, cannot afford to leave it, or do not want the bullies to win. In this case, it is important to know what your legal options are.