Harassment, bullying, belittling and exclusion surface in so many ways in the workplace, often showing the horrible behavior of colleagues and superiors whom you thought were fair and, sometimes, even your friends. Even when you try to remain professional, others may not, leaving you feeling discounted, alone and clutching at straws to keep your career.
This seems to be the scenario in a federal employment lawsuit filed in January involving a well-known news anchor in the Indianapolis market. Andrea Morehead claims that colleagues at her news station harassed and discriminated against her while she battled breast cancer. The lawsuit against WTHR-TV’s parent company Virginia-based Tegna Inc. was filed in federal court on Jan. 13.
Colleagues bet whether she would return to work
An employee of WTHR-TV since 1999, Morehead was diagnosed with an aggressive form of breast cancer in 2018 and went through 20 weeks of chemotherapy and later surgery. She returned to work later that year, but, according to Morehead, things then began to turn sour.
According to the lawsuit, her fellow employees made monetary bets as to whether she would return to work after her cancer-related treatments. Morehead also claimed that management consistently disregarded her reporting ideas and made it difficult for her to secure work-related accommodations while suffering from the side effects of her radiation and immunotherapy treatments.
To add more shame, her bosses sought medical documentation from her physicians and shared details of her illness with other employees. Morehead sought to keep this information private.
Finally, the lawsuit alleges that Tegna Inc. fired her after she filed a federal complaint regarding the discrimination she experienced.
This case may be among the most repugnant workplace harassment lawsuits in some time. If you are the victim of workplace harassment and discrimination, do not hesitate to take action. Fight for what is right and that includes your dignity, while standing up for yourself and others who may be experiencing similar circumstances.