Can my boss fire me for complaining about workplace safety?
Complaining about workplace safety issues, whether orally or in writing, is a protected activity under the law. It is illegal for an employer to fire an employee in retaliation for filing a complaint about unsafe working conditions. Employers cannot engage in other negative actions, such as demotions or pay cuts, against employees who report safety violations.
Employers are prohibited from firing or punishing employees who complain about workplace safety issues to their supervisor, human resources or a government agency like the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). An employee does not have to identify the specific safety regulation that the employer is violating. It is enough for the employee to report in good faith what they believe to be an unsafe work environment.
Additionally, employers cannot retaliate against workers who refuse to carry out job duties that violate an occupational health or safety standard. Employees who must testify in court about hazardous work conditions are also protected from termination or other forms of retaliation.
Every California employee has the right to work in a safe environment. If you suspect you were fired for an illegal reason, speak to an experienced wrongful termination lawyer. McCormack Law Firm can help you determine whether you have a case against your employer.