My question involves labor and employment law for the state of: WI
I work in a call-center style, customer service position. I have been in my position for 4 years and 4 months.
A year ago we learned that the customer service manager was being promoted to assistant manager of operations, but she was still overseeing the customer service area as well. So, we 4 customer service reps knew that someone was going to get promoted to be the assistant customer service manager. Everyone assumed it was to be me since I have knowledge of every aspect of the position, I'd been there the longest, & I helped the CSM with a lot of things already.
About 3 months ago, the CSM said she wanted to make an announcement (we're all in the same room). She said that "Steve" was being promoted to the Asst. CSM position. Everyone was dumbfounded & speechless. Steve has only been with the company for 2.5 years, he is a convicted felon (he stole over $10,000 would of merchandise from his last job and was selling it on eBay.), he was on work-release from jail when he started working there, he's still on probation for 3 more years and has more community service to do. He was also friends with the CSM and the Manager of Operations (also played in his band.) long before he was hired.
I requested a meeting with the CSM and the Human Resources manager and asked the why they had chosen him over me. She (the CSM) told me that he had past managerial experience (at the job he stole from), and she wished she could have chosen both of us, but that it wasn't practical. I expressed my disappointment in the decision, but I never said anything about his felon status (it's something he had told me in confidence, we were friends!). I also explained to them I felt it seemed strange that they were such close friends before he was even hired & now he's given a promotion I am more qualified for. She denied any favortism toward him because of their friendship. The CSM was teary by the end of the meeting, I have no idea why.
I got upset during the meeting and started to cry, but just talked through it. I cry a lot & they know it, they've seen me cry before. But when the meeting was over the Human resources woman said, "Are you going to be able to pull up your big-girl pants and get over this? Other people's attitudes are going to be determined by how you take this." First of all, what a condescending thing to say, and second, the fact that they think my reaction to something has that much influence on other people, should tell them something. I said nothing back to her & left the room.
Steve and I are the exact same age, we are both going to receive our degrees in Business Management within the next 2 years, most other employees have come to me to express their disappointment in the decision, some have also expressed it to management and to the owners of the company. I've been pretty much told to just deal with it.
It's known in our office that I someday would like to have children. Other women that have had children in the past couple years do not return to work because childcare is so expensive it doesn't pay to come back.
Every other manager at the company is either older, a man, or is never having children. I know I can't prove that they may be sexually discriminating against me, but is there anything I can do at all?