The law has defined sexual harassment as any unwanted sexual advances or behavior that occurs at work and contributes to a threatening, hostile, or objectionable work environment. In reality, sexual harassment at work can take many forms, from repeatedly making inappropriate or demeaning jokes to filling the office with obscene pornography and fostering a toxic work environment to outright sexual abuse.
Sexual assault is an equal opportunity violation, even though it most frequently manifests as men harassing women. In other words, it can happen to both men and women, homosexual or straight. Contact a Discrimination attorney virginia, to get help if you face any sexual harassment.
Steps to Take
- Be vocal and ask the harasser to stop.
You could tell the harasser to halt for now. Even though you might find this confrontation challenging, it is frequently the best method to deal with harassment. If the harassment is limited to crude jokes, offensive remarks about your looks, or garish drawings stuck to the office refrigerator, your chances of success are higher. Instead of confronting the harasser yourself, report the situation to a supervisor if you are worried about your security or fear that they might grow more hostile.
- Make sure to complain to your supervisors.
You should pursue your grievance inside the organization if addressing the harasser does not stop the harassment. Consult the manual or employee handbook for your company’s personnel rules. Exists a sexual harassment policy or a complaint procedure? If so, adhere to it. If not, find out how to file a complaint of sexual harassment from your supervisor or a personnel or human resources department member. Move up the command chain to executives and managers if you do not receive the assistance you require, keeping notes all the while.
You should notify the firm of the harassment, even if there isn’t a formal complaint process. You can do this by filing a complaint with the human resources division, discussing the issue with your superior, or alerting a corporate official.
- Make sure to register your claims:
If you ever need to make your case to a business prosecutor, a government organization, or a jury, you must keep detailed records of what is occurring to you and what you’re doing to attempt to halt it.
Start by gathering as much specific proof of the harassment as you can. Any offensive letters, photos, cards, or notes you get should be saved. Keep a thorough journal regarding any instances of harassment. Mention who was involved, what happened, where it happened, and when it happened. Make a note of anyone else who witnessed or heard the harassment. Describe everything that was said and done and how it impacted you, your wellbeing, or your ability to perform your work in as much detail as possible. Keep your notebook and notes in a secure location at home or away from the office.
- Before bringing a lawsuit, make a complaint to government agencies:
Going to your legislature’s fair employment office or the government organization that implements Title VII, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, is the next step if appealing to your boss does not help. You have the option to launch a civil case for compensation under either Title VII or your state’s fair hiring practices statute if an inquiry and settlement attempt come up empty-handed.