Sexual harassment is unfortunately very common in workplace settings, with women being the primary targets, which leaves many with the pressing question of how they can handle it.
Sexual harassment can take many forms, including physical contact, unwelcome sexual advances, inappropriate comments, constant nagging among many others. Perpetrators are usually colleges or even persons in leadership positions, who can make the victim uncomfortable, embarrassed, and even make the workplace environment hostile.
If you are a woman suffering sexual harassment, here are a few guidelines on how to deal with inappropriate or intimidating behavior at work.
Communicate your disapproval and gather evidence
The best thing is to let the person know that their specific behavior—be it sending inappropriate emails, touching your shoulder or staring makes you uncomfortable, and you would like them to stop.
If the perpetrator persists, prepare to report him by gathering evidence of his harassment. You can do this by keeping a record of dates and locations where they harassed you, save inappropriate emails and texts sent by them and even discretely try to record inappropriate comments or jokes on your mobile phone.
In addition, try to find out if there have been other formal complaints against your harasser by other colleges and secure their testimonies if available, as this would help strengthen any subsequent claim.
Inform your supervisor or senior management
If your attempts to make the harasser stop his behavior fail, inform your manager or supervisor of the harassment verbally or in writing and provide details of what exactly is happening to you. However, if they are the perpetrators or refuse to intervene, involve the HR manager or a member of the senior management. The manager is mandated by law to take up the case and warn or punish the harasser. The HR manager or supervisor should be able to resolve the issue internally and protect you from further harassment.
Get outside help
Sometimes, the internal mechanisms in your company may fail to stop or protect you from sexual harassment, especially if the perpetrator is a high ranking member of the organization, and leaves you with no option but to seek outside help.
Take the case to an independent employment tribunal who can investigate your claims and help resolve the situation. The tribunal can take punitive measures against the at-fault party and help you get your job back if you were fired as a result of the incident.
You can also file a sexual harassment lawsuit against your harasser with the help of an employment lawyer so as to recover monetary damages for your emotional distress, lost wages, embarrassment and other losses. Talk to a professional like Cunningham Law Professional Corporation divorce lawyer for assistance.Share
27 February 2015
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