No employee should have to put up with sexual harassment in the workplace. Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 clearly lays out the law against discrimination, including sexual harassment. There are also California laws in place and many employers have anti-sexual harassment policies.
Still, even with all of these laws and regulations — ones that are meant to protect employees — there are still those who attempt to skirt the rules. Often, this can leave an employee feeling uncomfortable and vulnerable. Some too also fear that reporting the harassment will lead to their own termination or negative retaliation.
The truth though is that employees have rights, and when these rights have been violated, an employee can bring a discrimination claim against their employer.
If you have been told that sexual harassment only includes inappropriate jokes or unwanted touching, know this is not true. Sexual harassment can take many different forms, including, but certainly not limited to:
- Requests for sexual favors
- Inappropriate comments or jokes
- Subtle hints
- Inappropriate gestures
If another employee, including a supervisor or manager, is making an employee feel uncomfortable, while it may be upsetting and unsettling to talk about, the best course of action is to reach out to an employment law attorney. This attorney can listen to the specifics of what is going on and discuss what legal options may be available.
To learn more about your rights as an employee, and what actions can be taken, visit our sexual harassment in the workplace page.