Update on Anti-Catholic Workplace

I had posted originally here: forums.catholic.com/showthread.php?t=963918&page=2 Regarding an anti-Catholic issue in my workplace. I had reported it to HR. It is now very well past the time where they were supposed to get back to me with the result of their inquiry, even if it was an interim update. They acknowledged receipt the following day, but nothing has happened. They’re apparently comfortable abandoning their own policies. I have been ridiculed for having a large family, denied promotion opportunities despite having outstanding performance reviews and being far better qualified than the people who got the promotions, and now upper management just blows off a politely worded complaint about anti-Catholic stereotyping. This is frustrating. I would have quit before, however my son has an incurable but treatable form of lymphoma and we need the health insurance. It’s an outstanding plan and we would be bankrupt without it. With any luck his condition will go into remission and we’ll have more options. But in the meantime I feel trapped. I just signed up with a job recruiter. I really don’t want to uproot my kids though. My dad did that to me when I was sixteen, and I don’t want to do that to my teenagers. Another option is to wait another nine years, get into a PhD program, and take early retirement. I can do that within commuting distance and between the graduate teaching stipend and pension I would be fine, and then start out again at a higher salary to save for full retirement. But it will be a long nine years. At the conclusion of the PhD my kids would be done with high school and I would feel better about relocating. I would be able to get a much higher salary then too. It’s no doable now because of cash flow issues and taking a pay cut for the teaching fellowship without anything to supplement it. Thoughts?

do what’s best for your family, not what’s best for you. It is a hard cross to bear but when you put others first God will put you where you need to be. Do your work cheerfully and honestly. Be fully Christian. 9 years will go by very, very quickly my friend.

I don’t have advice but I am praying for your intention. God bless.

Thoughts from an HR professional – while it’s absolutely on HR to have given you an update when they said they would, I don’t see any grounds for making accusations like “they’re abandoning their own policies.” Have you asked for an update? (politely, and without the accusations, of course). HR, like everyone else, sometimes gets overwhelmed. That’s not an excuse, but it is a fact.

If you have inquired, and been refused an update, that’s different. If your company has higher levels, this should be reported up the chain. If there isn’t anyone higher to go to, there are state and federal EEO complaints that can be made. You’ll have to decide whether you’re comfortable with that – retaliation is illegal, but that doesn’t mean some companies don’t try it, and you do have the insurance issue to consider.

I am terribly sorry you are going through this. I know that many offices say they uphold a code of conduct but it is nothing more than lip service. It is a hard cross to bear. As much as I can understand not wanting to uproot your kids, if the job is bad enough, I think uprooting the kids would be the lesser of 2 evils. but only you know the best option


Here is what I’ve learned.

Unless an employer is willing to change the way they do things, and acknowledge it there’s only one option left. It’s time to look for a new job.

Is this really about a picture of a nun with a ruler, and HR’s response to your objections?

I think not…


Anyway, you can either choose to leave or choose to stay. But I would not expect organisational change if the company culture is as bad as you suggest.

Thank you for your thoughts and prayers. Regarding going to HR for an update, our company has a history of bad behavior. HR is not exactly trusted at this point. Emailing them was sort of a knee-jerk reaction.

Underacloud, yes that is in the back of my mind. But I would have complained regardless.

After thinking about this and praying over the weekend, I think God is providing me with an opportunity to let go of my pride. The servant is not greater than the master, and if God, His prophets, and His Son were treated badly, I shouldn’t have such high expectations, especially when I am so blessed. I have friends there. My supervisor likes me. I am well respected by my peers. I make good money. Upper management is dysfunctional, so it’s actually a favor to me that I don’t have to work as their direct report. I was talking to a friend who was made a project manager, and she was telling me about how they treat other people, and it was not good. I live in a state where anti-Catholic attitudes are common, and management where I work is not nearly as bad as what I’ve gotten from my in-laws. It’s more muted due to the potential for litigation.

I just need to recognize my blessings and not surrender to pride.

That’s great that you see a way forward and that there are positive things in this workplace.

Praying for your peace and perseverance.

In most companies, the role of HR is to solely protect the company, not to help the employee. Do not be surprised if they merely received your complaint and used it to prepare a defense of the company, either against you or the offender or both, depending on the company interests and on your and the offender’s value to the company.

It’d have been better to bring your complaint directly to the offender and leave it between the two of you. If it then happens to be unpleasant or ineffective, rather than going to HR, it’s better to prepare to go elsewhere.

Pax Christi

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