I generally associate humiliation with profound embarrassment, but recently I have found the word used without such extreme connotations—particularly in a legal context.
In Canadian law, a person can be dismissed without just cause only by providing appropriate notice (which can be substantial) or payment in lieu. The dismissed employee has a duty to mitigate the damages by seeking alternative employment.
In some cases, such as a company buyout and reorganization, an employee's role is so changed that they can consider themselves constructively dismissed. The employer may request that the employee mitigate their damages by continuing to work throughout the notice period. But an employee is not obliged to mitigate by working in an atmosphere of hostility, embarrassment, or humiliation. In one case, reducing an executive secretary to clerical work was deemed humiliating.
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