New Jersey has a law called CEPA, the Consciences Employee Protection Act which affords employees protection against illegal retaliation for what we commonly call “whistle blowing.”

If you are an employee and you report what you believe to be an illegal action by your employer to your boss or another supervisory employee you are protected against adverse action or termination based on that protected conduct.

So for example if you tell your boss that there is some illegal accounting practice going on or that the employer is somehow doing something illegal or against the state’s public policy. Something that effects the citizens of the state, you are protected from adverse action. And these protections go greater than just complaining to your own employer. If you complain about some sort of violation or illegal conduct to an outside board like OSHA or some state or federal agency and you say look my employer is engaging in illegal conduct. I have a good faith belief that they are doing that your employer cannot terminate you, demote you, dock you in pay, suspend you or do anything like that in retaliation for that.

And in passing this law the legislature is telling employers that they have to be careful of how they treat employees who are trying to act in the advancement of public policy.

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