Some employees in California may feel that in order to be a valued and obedient employee, they should not ever complain about anything in the workplace. While this may be a reasonable approach to some unimportant matters that are irrelevant to the person's work, this is not true when it comes to safety concerns that impact the employees or the general public or anyone else.
When an employee has a safety concern they have every right to voice that concern to their employer. In return, the employer should address that individual's concerns. This is a process with which the employee should feel comfortable and be confident there will not be any negative repercussions. Unfortunately, that is not always the case. A California man claims that was not the case when he brought safety concerns to his employer and has therefore filed a wrongful termination lawsuit against that former employer.
The California man worked at a stem cell company. He was hired by the company in December of 2013 as the company's Senior Manager of manufacturing. After starting with the company, the man became concerned about the safety, or lack thereof, of the manufacturing processes and how those processes were endangering consumers. More specifically, he believed that the company was releasing dangerous and defective products into the marketplace for use in clinical trials.
The man took his concerns to a member of the company's upper management, who also happened to be his boss. Unfortunately, he states that she became angered with him and did not direct any energy toward fixing the problems with which the man was concerned. His employment was then terminated in May of 2014.
When whistleblowers are fired for voicing their concerns, it is an illegal termination and therefore a wrongful discharge. This type of termination is more formally known as a retaliatory discharge. When an employer fires an employee for an illegal reason the employee may be able to recover compensation by filing a wrongful termination lawsuit against their former employer.
Source: CBS Local, "Santa Clara Whistleblower Sues Newark Stem Cell Company That Fired Him," July 18, 2014