Sexual Harassment in the Workplace

By  | 

Employers generally offer their employees policies and complaints processes that offer protection. An individual should take note of sections dealing with sexual harassment. Furthermore, union representatives should also be contacted.

Sexual harassment in the workplace refers to any unwanted, sexualized conduct such as verbal and physical assault or any type of conduct with derogatory remarks that is offensive and unwanted by their target. Such conduct includes threats, jokes or derogatory comments which affect workplace morale and create an intimidating or hostile work environment for its victim(s).

To investigate legal possibilities, it could be necessary to speak with a bail lawyer depending on how serious the case is.

Workplace discrimination based on gender

As the women’s civil rights movement gained steam during the late 1960s, sexual harassment and discrimination in the workplace became an increasing source of worry. Despite efforts to combat it, this issue persisted; and its effects were especially harmful for women who still earned less than men.

Even though the Constitution does not expressly forbid employment discrimination, most State constitutions do. Furthermore, the Federal Government can pass civil rights laws that apply to private employers; however employers are allowed to take into account certain characteristics that would otherwise be discriminatory if they serve as bona fide occupational qualifications; examples may include age, sex and religion.

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) requires employers to provide anti-harassment training and review their policies every four years, but current provisions within current policies could deter employees from reporting harassment – potentially leading to fewer reports being filed than otherwise would be the case. Furthermore, under new guidelines employers must inform employees they will retaliate against anyone filing false claims and notify employees accordingly.

Hostile work environment

Steps exist to protect you from harassment in the workplace; if these procedures prove insufficient and you still feel unsafe at work, legal action may be necessary. An experienced lawyer will advocate on your behalf for an environment in which healthy and productive work environments exist.

In order to qualify as a hostile work environment, offensive conduct must be severe and pervasive, targeting protected characteristics as defined by state and federal law. Employees may not face discrimination based on race, color, ancestry, national origin religion age disability genetic information sexual orientation gender identity and expression or gender expression.

When reporting harassment, be sure to include as much detail as possible and document any eyewitness accounts. Doing this will increase your chances of showing that your employer knew about and failed to correct inappropriate behavior as well as that they created an hostile work environment based on protected characteristics.

Harassment by supervisors

Managers and supervisors need to take an active part in creating a harassment-free work environment, organizing regular training sessions that all employees are required to attend, including explaining what harassment means as well as encouraging all staff members to report any form of bullying or harassing behavior, even if it doesn’t directly involve them.

Sexual harassment occurs when an employee receives unwanted requests for sexual favors or offers of preferential treatment or promotions, and offensive remarks made about his/her physical appearance, race/ethnic origin, religious practices or beliefs, sexual orientation/gender identity/sex identity as well as age/parental status/political affiliation/disability status etc. It should never occur without just cause.

An employer may be held liable for harassment when one or more supervisors engage in harassment-inducing behavior or take actions against employees who complain about it. To successfully file suit, however, the plaintiff must demonstrate that negligence played a part in their handling of the situation.

Harassment by non-employees

When experiencing sexual harassment at work from non-supervisory employees such as customers or vendors, individuals have several actions available to them. One option would be communicating directly with those harassing them to ask them to stop, either written or verbally – being sure to keep a copy as proof. They should also keep notes regarding interactions during this period.

Sexual harassment should not only be understood as a violation of company policy; it may also violate federal law. Harassment includes any unwanted physical contact or communication that has sexual overtones that isn’t required for the task at hand.

Once a sexual harassment claim is reported to an employer, they must conduct a proper investigation. Some employers may attempt to avoid conducting an impartial inquiry by intimidating or demoting those they suspect of misconduct prior to its completion; working with an employment attorney may help ensure a comprehensive and transparent inquiry process from their employer.

The minimum sentence for sexual assault differs from state to state, but can include jail time, fines and restitution, community service, probation, and mandatory attendance of anger management classes.