I am suffering from stress related illness because of my work situation. I began working there about 2 years ago.

Asked 8 months ago - Rolla, MO

My work is as software developer at a University. When I started they gave me the impression that I would be quickly promoted and paid adequate compensation. I was mislead. It has been over 2 years and they haven't sufficiently compensated me for my work. I do expert level work for entry level pay. They have created a hostile working environment and I've been harassed frequently. My finances are now in a terrible state where my debt has ballooned beyond my ability to pay. I now suffer from back pain, daily migraine headaches, ringing in my ears and stomach problems. What can I do legally?

Additional information

I think they may be discriminating against me on the basis of race. I'm part Native American. I don't look white.

I found some additional information today. Apparently (unknown to me at the start) the department that I work in has been in turmoil for sometime. Everyone there feels overworked and underpaid. They have a higher turn-over rate than most other departments. Advancement is painfully slow and requires a Machiavellian type of political strategy. I'm going to double my efforts to find a new job. That's really the only option. No one has ever successfully won an EEOC complaint against them because they are careful to cover their ass legally.

Attorney answers (11)

  1. Christian K. Lassen II

    Pro

    Contributor Level 20

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    Answered . You "think" is not going to cut it, and you need to document specific instances of racial discrimination, and then file a complaint on EEOC website, then wait 6 months to see if you get a "right to sue letter"

  2. Spencer Edward Farris

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    Contributor Level 13

    11

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    Answered . I am sorry to hear about your experience. Nothing you have described is actionable.

    While we hope this information is helpful and informative, it should not be considered a substitute for legal... more
  3. John M O'Brien

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    Contributor Level 18

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    Answered . You can consult with an employment attorney but there might not be much you can do besides looking for another employment . Good luck

  4. Samuel Cohen

    Contributor Level 20

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    1

    Answered . Consult with an employment attorney. If you have a contract take it to your meeting. Use Avvo's Find a Lawyer service to help you locate a lawyer nearby.

    We can be reached at 215-545-2201. Our firm has lawyers licensed to practice in Pennsylvania and New Jersey and in... more
  5. Pearlette Vivian Toussant

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    Contributor Level 16

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    Answered . If you feel like you're being harassed or discriminated against because you are Native American, contact a local employment lawyer as suggested by another attorney. If you're not being paid what you believe you are worth, you are always free to seek other employment. Good luck.

    Answer given for general advice and is not a legal opinion, which would require an analysis of the facts and... more
  6. John L. Schroeder

    Contributor Level 18

    10

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . It doesn't sound like there is much you can do. It would be extremely difficult to prove your injuries were the result of your employment

  7. Albert Lee Crosner

    Contributor Level 18

    7

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    Best Answer
    chosen by asker

    Answered . I would suggest moving on to another company or University. It would seem that for a software developer there could be other jobs to consider. Life is too short.

    Mr. Crosner is licensed to practice law in California and has been practicing law in California since 1978. The... more
  8. Matthew James O'Laughlin

    Contributor Level 7

    6

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . To show racial discrimination, you will need to establish that you have been treated worse than other employees who are similarly situated with you, but who are of a different race. For example, if less qualified or poorer performing employees of a different race performing a job similar to yours were promoted while you were not, that may be evidence of discrimination. If you file a charge of discrimination, be sure to file it with the Missouri Commission on Human Rights in addition to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Missouri has one of the best anti-discrimination statutes in the country and only requires that plaintiffs show race was a "contributing factor" in the negative employment action.

  9. C. Donald Briggs III

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    Contributor Level 20

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    Answered . What you can do is consult with an experienced employment law attorney. The attorney can tell you if you have a case.

  10. David A. Papa

    Contributor Level 16

    5

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Contact an attorney that handles Labor and Employment Law. Get a free consultation and explain in detail why you believe you have a case. You can either go with a private lawyer or make a complaint with the E.E.O.C.-Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. is important that you have witnesses to the harassment. If you are not being properly compensated than the attorney can turn you on to the appropriate state agency to handle. If racially bases the Labor/Employment attorney and EEOC are best suited to discuss the legal matter to you so that you understand.

  11. Melvin G. Franke

    Contributor Level 13

    3

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Hire an experienced attorney

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