Avoiding Whistleblower Retaliation Claims

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Sarbanes-Oxley, Dodd Frank, the False Claims Act and many other state and federal laws protect employees from retaliation when they report wrongdoing in the workplace. Retaliation is also the most common basis of discrimination claims, appearing in more than a third of all claims filed with the EEOC. Retaliation lawsuits cost employers millions each year.

But at the same time, it’s important for employers to ensure whistleblowers continue to come forward to report workplace misconduct and this can only happen if companies provide an environment that encourages whistleblowing and discourages retaliation.

Assuming that retaliation can be avoided by simply training leaders that retaliation is illegal, ignores the human realities of why leaders retaliate.

Join Lorene Schaefer, Esq. in a free one-hour webinar as she outlines strategies for tackling the challenges of whistleblower retaliation.  Schaefer is a mediator, independent investigator, attorney and managing partner of Schaefer & Associates, LLC and the president of Workplace Group USA, LLC.

In this webinar Schaefer will share tips for not simply training leaders not to retaliate, but for taking steps to foster a culture where the risks of retaliation are mitigated.


Webinar attendees will learn:
  • The importance of emphasizing zero tolerance for retaliation
  • Creating anti-retaliation policies
  • Developing training and reinforcement
  • Fostering a culture of openness and compliance via procedurally fair internal investigation and resolution processes

Based on 26+ years of practicing law, Schaefer feels that assuming retaliation can be avoided by simply training leaders that retaliation is illegal ignores the human realities of why leaders retaliate. She believes that a leader’s retaliatory behavior often arises out of fear and a sense of self-preservation – fear that the leader has done something wrong or fear that something under the leader’s watch has gone wrong and the leader will be blamed. Faced with this fear and unclear what to do when faced with an employee concern, a leader’s natural tendency may well be to think of all the reasons the employee’s concern can’t be valid and to view the employee’s concern as a personal assault. Leaders may well resort to a “fight or flight” mentality, which often leads to claims of retaliation.

Webinar Presenter

Lorene Schaefer
Lorene Schaefer

Attorney

Lorene Schaefer is the managing partner of Schaefer & Associates, LLC (WinWinHR.com) and has more than 26 years of legal experience, including 14-years as in-house counsel at the General Electric Company. She conducts internal corporate compliance, Title IX and EEO investigations and is a registered mediator and author.

Schaefer also serves as the President of Workplace Group USA, LLC (workplacegroupusa.com), a consulting company that delivers training on how to conduct effective internal corporate compliance, Title IX, student conduct and EEO investigations and offers a nationwide network of attorney investigators.

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