Sexual harassment is part of sex discrimination and when it happens in the workplace, it’s a violation of Title VII of the civil rights act of 1964. Any unwelcomed sexual request or sexual favors is considered as sexual harassment and has to be dealt with by law. Women aren’t the only victims of sexual harassment, the harasser can either be male or female, the victim can also be male or female, it can also be of the same gender, that’s male harassing male or female harassing a female.
If you’re experiencing a lot of misconducts at the workplace you might have a lot of questions in mind on how to deal with the situation, such questions include;
- The behavior you colleague or your boss is showing is it even considered as sexual harassment?
- What are the right steps that need to be taken in order to deal with the situation?
- Should you report the misconduct and where should you start from?
- Can you protect yourself from future sexual misconduct?
- If you succeeded with your case, are you protected from your employer if he tries to retaliate against you?
Almost every victim of sexual harassment will have these questions in his mind more especially the last question because most employers will try to retaliate against you if you report them to the proper authorities. In this article, we shall explain sexual harassment and how to deal with it.
Behaviors That Are Considered As Sexual Harassment
The types of behaviors considered as sexual harassment depend on the people involved and on the situation in which occurred. Any sexual favor or unwanted sexual advances can be considered as sexual harassment, this could be done directly or indirectly such as giving bribes for the sake of sexual favors, it can also be in the form of sexual suggestive jokes, brushing up against another person, any form of touching or displaying explicit material can still be taken as sexual harassment.
The Law That Governs Sexual Harassment
The civil rights of 1964 protect all individual from any form of sexual discrimination. This law makes it clear that no employer should discriminate anyone when it comes to firing or hiring and any other form of employment benefits such as salary raises, promotions or any opportunity due to their sex. Sexual discrimination in the workplace is a big threat to society and in the eyes of the court, it’s a form of sex discrimination.
As stated earlier the civil rights act of 1964 protects all individuals from any form of sexual discrimination in the workplace, some states, however, offer more protection to its residents against sexual discrimination. There is a need for everyone to check with their state laws regarding sexual discrimination.
Types Of Sexual Harassment Claims
Quid pro quo; this happens when the employer makes certain decisions based on the individual’s willingness to submit himself to any form of sexual harassment, this includes decisions such as promotions, keeping job contract, or assignments. Any unwelcome sexual request is considered as quid pro quo when it falls under the following 2 categories;
- When the hiring decision is based on the individual’s willingness to submit to sexual conduct.
- When employment benefits are offered based on sexual favors.
Hostile work environment; if the workplace is hostile, offensive or intimidating, then such sexual harassment claim falls under hostile work environment-claim.
How To Deal With Sexual Harassment At The Workplace
Even if you’re confident that your co-worker or employer has sexually harassed you, there is the need to take the right steps because if not then you may lose your case. You should report to human resources or any managerial employees first so that the person is held responsible for the sexual harassment.
If you have been sexually harassed and it has not stopped after you reported it to the appropriate manager or owner of the business, you need a professional attorney whose expertise is in the field of sexual harassment. He can outline all the necessary steps that are needed in order to make sure that the harasser is dealt with properly and also to make sure that the harasser won’t make a wrong move by retaliating against you. Document all the details that happened by date and if there are possible witnesses you should include them in your documentation.
If you’re a victim of sexual harassment in the workplace and you need some assistance contact us now at Massey & Duffy for a free consultation so that we can answer any questions that you might have.