My question involves labor and employment law for the state of: Wisconsin
Hello. This is a strange one.
I feel I have to resign from a good job that I enjoy because of a co-worker's toxic amount of cologne. Multiple complaints have been filed with managers and HR by no less than 3 employees over the course of 2+ months.
This co-worker was recently moved down to the desk next to mine. The co-worker exercises vigorously to a sweat 3 times per day during break times. He admits he does not bathe regularly, if at all, but instead uses an unbelievable amount of cologne. The cologne gives me instantaneous headaches - not migraines, but quite severe. I have become nauseous in my own waste basket.
After addressing the complaints with the co-worker several times, HR's final response to me was that none of the managers or HR personnel have ever smelled anything when dealing with this co-worker, and therefore do not think there is an issue. I admit, that is a clever way to make the problem go away, at least on their end, but my headaches continue.
My request for a new desk location was denied. My request to speak to the employee personally and sympathetically was also denied.
I visited an allergist who insisted that she write a letter to my HR department, citing the excessive cologne as a health hazard. She also suggested I contact a lawyer for a possible lawsuit. That idea does not excite me, but I would consider it.
The headaches are severe, and I cannot face many more days of them. The only jobs available right now in my field, and they are slim, are contracted positions without any benefits. Mine is the sole income supporting my family of four (2 young children).