Sexual harassment is a common problem in workplaces today. In Morristown, many victims of sexual harassment at work have reported their experiences following the #metoo movement. Sexual harassment takes many forms and can be carried out by anyone, from coworkers to supervisors or managers. It may also happen as unwanted physical contact, inappropriate jokes, lewd remarks, or comments about appearance. In some cases, sexual harassment may involve physical assault or rape.
Although most people experience sexual harassment in workplaces, only a few know to speak out about it. It can be common for victims of sexual harassment to feel ashamed and not want to report it. It is often not until a new incident occurs that they realize this behavior needs to stop. Sexual harassment in the workplace is a violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, or national origin. If you think it is high time you react to sexual harassment at your workplace, then it is better to consult with an experienced Morristown employment attorney about its legal aspects.
What is Sexual Harassment?
Sexual harassment is a form of discrimination that often goes unreported. It's not just physical contact, either. There are many ways to sexually harass someone, including improper touching, inappropriate comments, unwanted sexual advances, and offensive jokes. If you feel uncomfortable or unsafe because of someone's behavior or actions, it may be considered sexual harassment.
In the workplace, any unwanted sexual conduct is considered harassment. This includes inappropriate comments about an employee's appearance, pressure to exchange sexual favors for a raise or promotion, or any other type of unwanted physical contact. Such harassment can make workers feel unsafe and can negatively affect productivity on the job.
Two primary forms of sexual harassment at workplaces include:
- Quid Pro Quo Sexual Harassment
Quid pro quo sexual harassment, also called "sexual extortion," is an unlawful employment practice where a supervisor or employer conditions employment benefits on an employee's submission to sexual advances. It is one of the most common forms of sexual harassment because the victim typically has little choice in addressing it. If they refuse, their job may be at risk.
- Hostile Work Environment Sexual Harassment
Hostile work environment sexual harassment is a form of workplace harassment that can take place in any organization. It is classified as "unwelcome behavior" because the environment the organization creates is hostile to other employees, and it includes unwelcome sexual advances or demands for sexual favors. The victim must feel that there is no escape from the environment, that it could happen again at any time, and that they cannot do anything about it. A hostile work environment can also affect someone's mental health and even lead to PTSD.