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Thread: Possible Hostile work environment- need help Florida

  1. #1
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    Unhappy Possible Hostile work environment- need help Florida

    I've been working at a company for a little over a year now. No more than 6 ft away is a coworker, who is constantly *****ing and complaining about everything from work to home. Just completely negative about everything with nothing good to say about anyone who works there. He also has anger issues throwing screwdrivers and such around.

    I have made repeated complaints about his demeanor to virtually no effect. In fact they have actually told him that I complained about his attitude. creating further tension. His attitude is well know by everyone at the company. however I am the only one who has to deal with it all day everyday as our department is set off to the side from everyone else.

    Now just the other day he was threatening to fight me because I "ignored" him(which I actually didn't he just didn't hear my response). I brought this to the shop foreman's attention and they have finally sat down with him and wrote him up and said anymore outburts and hes gone.

    However I am not comfortable working with someone who has threatened me simply because I "ignored" him. My feeling is, how do I know his next outburt isn't going to be him throwing a screwdriver at me because I 'looked' at him funny?

    I have expressed these concerns to HR and offered to work different hours so everyone wins and they just kind of brush the suggestion off. I do like my job but I have a feeling that my only option is to quit. However due to a no-compete clause I can't just leave and work for another company in the field.

    I'm just lost on what to do. I'm stressed out over his general attitude and with this threat I refuse to work with him anymore. do I have any options beside quitting?

  2. #2
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    FYI, the term, hostile work environment has a very specific meaning in employment law and what you have described does not meet the legal definition, no matter how unpleasant or uncomfortable.

    The employer is not obligated to fire him or transfer you just because you don't want to work with him any more. He can't fight you without your cooperation. They've taken action - just not the action you want, and he's not violating any laws anyway (which means that they don't HAVE to do anything at all).

    So no, if you "refuse" to work with him and the employer is not interested in firing him or transferring either of you, your only option is to quit. And no, you would be unlikely to get unemployment.
    The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.

  3. #3
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    Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. Leo Buscaglia

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  4. #4
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    do I have any options beside quitting? Yes, which is to stick it out in anticipation your co-worker will have another outburst and (hopefully), he'll be fired. I understand why you're uncomfortable working near him but don't let this jerk drive you out of your job.

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