Summary: I work in that company for 8 years. I want to transfer to another department because my current management has done illegal things that I've documented in emails to them. I think they prevent transfer as retaliation for recording illegal activities. How to professionally navigate that situation? I want to work in the company, but change departments.
New and anonymous account for obvious reasons. I could really use some sound advice from an outside perspective. I'm going to try to limit specifics as much as possible to avoid identifying myself.
I've been working at this company for 8 years. I started as a tech, and worked my way up to engineer. I'm smart and highly motivated. I do good work. I work on the manufacturing side. I don't care for my direct boss, or my boss' boss. They are both extremely controlling individuals. I'm talking manipulative sociopaths. For quite some time, I've wanted to move from manufacturing to engineering (R&D). The management there is better, and I can learn more from coworkers there. Since about 2 years ago, the management of manufacturing discovered my desire to transfer to R+D engineering. They have been actively preventing this from happening (they know I do good work and want to keep me). Due to the controlling nature of said management, they have crossed boundaries that are illegal to cross. That is, they have done things that certainly violate HIPAA laws, as well as general EOC laws. I have this documented via email. Management knows this, and is afraid I will start a lawsuit against them. As a result, their strategy has been to try to make me "afraid" of losing my job. That is, they have been trying to induce fear in me to keep me from documenting behavior, or attempting a lawsuit. They have turned all my coworkers against me, and are actively surveilling me every moment I'm at work. They are trying to set me up for fireable offenses to get "ammo" against me in a lawsuit. I don't like this, its an uncomfortable work environment. They want me to think I'm in danger of being fired. They take actions which attempt to intimidate me, but that are difficult to prove. Perhaps they are trying to get me to quit. If they do fire me, I definitely have a lawsuit against them.
Really what I want is to work for engineering though. I don't want to sue anybody. I cant keep working for the manufacturing management however. What manufacturing has done to me in the past is definitely wrong, I cant continue to work for them. I've exhausted options with HR. Should I approach the CEO and explain my predicament? Should I threaten a lawsuit if I'm not transferred to R+D? Should I start the proceedings for a lawsuit in hopes management will improve their behavior? The evidence I have, is definitely worth millions in damages. I'm confused, miserable, and don't know what to do. Also, I'm on the spectrum and don't know the preferred way to reach a solution in a situation like this.