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Dolphins Managers Didn’t Know About Bullying

On Behalf of | Sep 12, 2016 | Employment Law

Because of an unwritten “bro code” between Miami Dolphin’s players, offensive lineman Jonathan Martin, subject of bullying and harassment by fellow players, may be without a case.

Martin left the team abruptly in October 2013, revealing that he was the subject of bullying and harassment, including texts from fellow lineman Richie Incognito and others that included racial slurs, threats to rape Martin’s sister, and comments about not being “black enough.”

He told an NFL investigator that he didn’t report the behavior to top executives or coach Joe Philbin because he was trying to honor a “Judas” code about not snitching on fellow teammates. However, that move may have destroyed any case he could have against the team, since when he did report it in October, the Dolphins immediately suspended Incognito. The Dolphins have a clear code on bullying and harassment that includes “jokes, comments and antics; generalizations and put-downs; pornographic or suggestive literature and language” either in person, or by email or text.

Martin’s options are limited even if he did win a case, since workers generally seek job reinstatement and back pay in harassment cases, and Martin continued to be paid after he quit the team, and because they did not cut him.

If you have been the target of workplace harassment, discrimination or unfair termination, Bouchillon, Crossan & Colburn, L.C. represents clients in federal court and before the EEOC, MSPB and in state and union grievance hearings. Call Bouchillon, Crossan & Colburn, L.C. at 304-523-8451 or contact us online to schedule an appointment.