Sexual Harassment is a form of sexual discrimination that violates the Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The Title VII protects individuals against employment discrimination on the basis of sex as well as race, color, national origin, and religion. It is unwanted and uninvited attention which can include physical contact, verbal abuse, gestures or written messages. It is unwanted sexual advances, which can include sexual extortion, sexual favors, and unwanted sexual interactions. It also includes e-mailing, or circulating jokes containing sexual references or innuendo, or engaging in conversation with obvious sexual overtones. The use of company computers to view or forward pornographic material from the Internet is also deemed offensive, and therefore not allowed in a work place. It must be also emphasized that when a person says no it means no. Any time one precedes after he or she is told no it is considered unwelcome behavior.
Companies must have policies in place to protect their employees as well as themselves. In order to implement the policies the companies should:
1. Inform all employees of the policies.
2. Discuss all the policies periodically.
3. When possible make the policies available electronically.
4. A training program will reinforce all the policies and ensure all employees are aware of the proper procedures, and their rights.
5. All complaints must be investigated, take the complaint seriously and disciplinary action taken when necessary.
Some states require certain employers to conduct sexual harassment training; other states recommend it even though it's not a legal requirement. All companies must be in compliance of the law.
Federal law has two legal grounds for sexual harassment: quid pro quo and hostile work environment.
Quid pro quo - a person in authority, usually a supervisor, demands sexual favors of a subordinate as a...