Offensive comments are made against me in my office. What should I do? Should I complain to my HR?
Question in detail: Hi Bhavna. I am a wheelchair user and I work in a company. For the last 3 months a colleague has been saying that my disability gives me an unfair advantage at work. What should I do? Complain to HR??
Answer: Hello. Yes, I agree, comments like these are insensitive and hurtful, and are not funny at all. The fact that he is saying it often does indicate some double intention. I suggest instead of reacting angrily, you ask him calmly in front of everyone if he thinks you are any less qualified or capable than the others.
Also, tell him he should think twice before making such comments given the many challenges people with disabilities face in our society. If he continues to make such comments to undermine you, you should mention it to your HR person but since he is your equal, you should tell him first.