What Protections Are Available for Whistleblowers?

Whistleblowers play a vital role in discovering and prosecuting illegal acts such as fraud in our economy. Therefore, it is crucial to ensure whistleblowers can come forward with the confidence that state and federal laws will protect them from retaliation.

Fortunately, many laws protect whistleblowers who uncover misdeeds such as fraud, wage theft, and discrimination, including:

Other industry-specific laws protect some workers or cover specific types of violations. A knowledgeable employment law attorney can help you protect your rights under all whistleblower protection laws.

Act Quickly to Protect Your Legal and Financial Interests

Each source of protection has its legal limits, administrative or procedural processes, and applicable reporting deadlines – some as short as 30 days.

If you are a whistleblower, it is crucial to move quickly with the help of experienced counsel who understands how to navigate the justice system for your benefit. Contact us today for a consultation.

In a significant development, the lawyers of Just Right Law filed a  lawsuit on October 30, 2023, against the City of Burton, Michigan, along with several individuals and entities, by Just Right Law. This legal action comes as a response to the pervasive discrimination, hostile work environment, and retaliation faced by two female officers and the Chief of Police in the City of Burton. Attorneys Muneeb M. Ahmad and Syed Hussain Akbar of Just Right Law have investigated the case thoroughly and found it to be justified and supported by evidence.

The Lawsuit Details

The lawsuit targets several parties, including Officers Kevin Jones, Kevin Kissel, and Dana Piazza, along with Councilwoman Tina Conley, for their roles in perpetuating a hostile environment characterized by discrimination based on National Origin, Sex, and Sexual Orientation.

In addition, the lawsuit seeks to hold the City of Burton, the Police Officers Labor Council for Command Officers, and Patrol Offices liable for their discriminatory and retaliatory toxic police culture, customs,  policies, and practices that target racial and ethnic minorities, females and/or LGBTQ police officers and employees within the City’s Police Department.

The Evidence

The evidence presented in the lawsuit highlights the City of Burton’s complicity in fostering a pervasive and toxic police culture within its Police Department. This environment subjected Plaintiffs to a hostile work environment, encompassing discrimination based on race, ethnicity, pregnancy status, sexual orientation, and associational discrimination. The lawsuit points to instances where Individual Defendants sought to undermine the authority and tarnish the reputation of Chief Ross, Sergeant Glasstetter, and Officer Conquest with knowingly false and defamatory narratives.

Furthermore, the evidence confirms that after reporting this discriminatory and retaliatory environment to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), Defendant Councilwoman Tina Conley retaliated against Plaintiffs by targeting Sergeant Glasstetter with a false accusation of misconduct, which was later found to have no basis.

A Toxic Culture

The lawsuit reveals a pervasive and toxic culture within the City of Burton’s police department that discriminates against women, racial minorities, the LGBTQ community, and those who support these protected classes. This culture is not limited to patrol officers but is also prevalent among command staff. What makes matters worse is the City’s inaction despite numerous internal and external complaints regarding this discriminatory behavior.

A Call for Change

This lawsuit is a response to a concerted effort to intentionally retaliate against individuals who bravely stood up to the discriminatory and hostile conduct they faced. Just Right Law aims to hold those responsible accountable and effectuate much-needed change in how the City addresses claims of discrimination and the toxic, discriminatory culture that plagues its Police Department.

Just Right Law’s lawsuit against the City of Burton, Michigan, and various individuals and entities sheds light on the urgent need to address discrimination and retaliation within the City’s Police Department. It represents an opportunity to heal wounds and bring about positive change that will benefit all members of the community.

The press is encouraged to share this information with the public, and inquiries can be directed to Just Right Law for further information.

PRESS RELEASE:
A LAWSUIT HAS BEEN FILED OCTOBER 30, 2023, AGAINST THE CITY OF BURTON,
THE POLICE OFFICER LABOR COUNCIL – BURTON CITY COMMAND OFFICERS,
POLICE OFFICERS LABOR COUNCIL – BURTON PATROL OFFICERS, OFFICERS
KEVIN JONES, KEVIN KISSEL, AND DANA PIAZZA, COUNCILWOMAN TINA
CONELY, AND MAYOR DUANE HASKINS (IN HIS OFFICIAL CAPACITY ONLY) TO
HOLD THEM ACCOUNTABLE FOR DISCRIMINATION AND RETALIATION-RELATED
TO SEX, RACE, AND NATIONAL ORIGIN DIRECTED AT TWO FEMALE OFFICERS
AND THE CHIEF OF POLICE

After an investigation by attorneys Muneeb M. Ahmad and Syed Hussain Akbar of Just Right
Law, it was determined that the lawsuit is justified and supported by the evidence. This lawsuit
aims to hold, Officers Kevin Jones, Kevin Kissel, and Dana Piazza, as well as Councilwoman
Tina Conley (hereinafter the “Individual Defendants”), liable in their individual and official
capacities, for pervasive and ongoing discrimination, hostile environment, and retaliation-based
on National Origin, Sex, and Sexual Orientation.


Further, this lawsuit, naming Defendant Mayor Duane Haskins, in his Official Capacity only,
seeks to hold the City of Burton and the Police Officers Labor Council for Command Officers
and Patrol Officers liable for their discriminatory and retaliatory toxic police culture, customs,
policies, and practices that target racial and ethnic minorities, females, and/or LGBTQ police
officers and employees within the City’s Police Department.


As further outlined in the lawsuit, the evidence determined that the City of Burton’s acquiescence
to a pervasive and toxic police culture within the Department, subjected Plaintiffs to a hostile
work environment which encompassed discrimination based on race, ethnicity, pregnancy status,
sexual orientation, and associational discrimination at the hands of the Individual Defendants.


This hostile work environment and retaliation included but was not limited to, Individual
Defendants subjecting Chief Ross, Sergeant Glasstetter, and Officer Conquest to a knowingly
false and defamatory narrative of a workplace affair, sexual misconduct, and blackmail
aimed at undermining their authority and tarnishing and damaging their credibility and reputation
within the community.


Further, the evidence also confirmed that after reporting this discriminatory and retaliatory
hostile environment to the EEOC, Defendant Councilwoman further retaliated against Plaintiffs by targeting Sergeant Glasstetter and making a false accusation of misconduct against her for which there was an investigation that rendered a finding of no cause.


Evidence in the lawsuit further suggests a pervasive, toxic culture within the police department.
This culture, based on discrimination against women, racial minorities, the LGBTQ community,
and those who support these protected classes is prevalent among both patrol officers and
command staff and supported by the City’s inaction, despite numerous internal and external
complaints.


This lawsuit is in direct response to a concerted effort to retaliate against individuals intentionally
who were willing to stand up to Individual Defendants in the face of outrageous discriminatory
and hostile conduct that no one in this day and age should be forced to bear.


The City of Burton and the Police Unions through their inaction, have wounded three upstanding
law enforcement officials and the protected classes they represent. Further, retaliation against
those three individuals has caused wounds to fester.


This lawsuit represents an opportunity to excise that wound and effectuate much-needed change
in both how the City addresses claims of discrimination and the pervasive, toxic, discriminatory
culture rampant in the City’s Police Department.


We respectfully request the press to share this information with the public. Should you have any
question, please feel free to contact our office

Starting a business in Michigan comes with its fair share of pivotal decisions. Among the most consequential is the type of business entity you opt for. This choice can profoundly impact your venture’s legal, financial, and operational dimensions. At Just Right Law, we pride ourselves on delivering tailored legal solutions that empower our clients to make informed choices​.

Sole Proprietorships

Sole Proprietorships are the most straightforward entities to establish. They require no formal registration, and you can operate under your own name or a DBA. The primary advantage is the ease of starting up and having direct control over business affairs. However, the downside is the unlimited personal liability you bear, coupled with limited avenues for fundraising.

Partnerships

Partnerships, on the other hand, are arrangements between two or more individuals. While some partnerships might necessitate state registration, the essence lies in the mutual agreement. The combined skillsets and resources can be a boon, facilitating shared responsibilities. That said, partners need to be wary of the fact that they could be personally liable for all of the partnership’s debts and the potential for internal disputes.

LLCs

LLCs (Limited Liability Companies) strike a balance between simplicity and formality. To set up an LLC, one must file articles of organization with the state. In addition, you should draft an operating agreement, but there is no requirement to do so or register it with the state. The primary benefit of an LLC is that you will be protected from personal liability for business debts – provided you follow certain formalities. Liability protection is a significant draw, along with management flexibility and possible tax benefits. However, they come with their own set of challenges, including more paperwork than sole proprietorships and potential self-employment taxes.

Corporations

Lastly, Corporations are more complex entities, requiring founders to file Articles of Incorporation, establish bylaws, and appoint directors. They are favored for their limited liability provisions, the ease of raising capital, and the potential for an enduring existence. But they also have their downsides, like the risk of double taxation and a higher regulatory burden.

Call Us Today to Schedule a Free Case Evaluation with a Michigan Business Lawyer

The business entity you choose should align with your vision, risk appetite, and financial considerations. At Just Right Law, our commitment is to ensure your business’s foundational decisions are made with clarity and conviction, rooted in open, honest, and frank communication. To schedule a consultation with a business lawyer in Michigan, call our office today at (248) 519-2313 or contact us online.