March 28, 2000 Mr. Grant Newcomb Human Resources Manager Newcomb Beef Processors Idlewild Road, New Cannan, OH 46529 Dear Mr. Newcomb, Subject: Sexual harassment Introduction This report describes what sexual harassment is, and how to investigate and prevent it. Sexual harassment is an ongoing problem that every company faces. The problem is likely to increase with more women and minorities entering the workplace. Companies need to take a strong stand against sexual harassment by conducting themselves properly and communicating with every employee that they will not tolerate it.
Definition According to Edward J. Ottensmeyer and Gerald D. McCarthy in their book Ethics in the Workplace, there are two types of sexual harassment. The first, called quid pro quo, is defined as any unwelcome sexual conduct that is a term or condition of employment. This is when a supervisor says that he will not hire or promote you unless you give him a sexual favor; that is making sex a condition of employment.
The second type is the hostile work environment. This is when harassment interferes with job performance or creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work environment. The courts have brought in that if a "reasonable person"Ã¯Â¿Â½ thinks it is a hostile environment, then it is. This second type of sexual harassment is a gray area because the courts have not defined what a "reasonable person"Ã¯Â¿Â½ is and because it can include many different types of behavior.
Behaviors may include, but are not limited to: leering, any unwanted touching or hugging, inappropriate gifts, or comments of a sexual nature.
Another important point brought up by Ottensmeyer and McCarthy is that people harass others not because of sex but because of power. This power can be earned by the position they hold or it can be ascribed, which is...