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How to Handle Sexual Harassment at Work

By Corey Hanrahan

Sexual harassment is illegal under both California law and Federal law. Still, handling sexual harassment at work can be a difficult and sensitive situation, but it’s important to take action to ensure a safe and respectful workplace. Here are some general guidelines on how to handle sexual harassment at work:

  1. Understand what constitutes sexual harassment: Sexual harassment can take many forms, including unwanted sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or any verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature that creates an uncomfortable or hostile work environment. Be familiar with your company’s policies and guidelines, and the law, on sexual harassment.

  2. Report the harassment: If you experience or witness sexual harassment, report it to your employer, human resources representative, or other appropriate person in your company as soon as possible. Many companies have specific procedures for reporting sexual harassment, so be sure to follow those procedures.

  3. Keep records: Keep a detailed record of the harassment, including the date, time, location, and any witnesses who may have observed the behavior. This information can be important if you decide to file a formal complaint.

  4. Seek support: Sexual harassment can be emotionally and mentally distressing. Seek support from friends, family, or a mental health professional if needed. Your employer may also offer resources such as an employee assistance program (EAP).

  5. Take action: Your employer is required to investigate any reports of sexual harassment and take appropriate action. This may include counseling, training, disciplinary action, or termination of the harasser’s employment.

  6. Follow up: After reporting sexual harassment, follow up with your employer or HR representative to ensure that the situation is being properly addressed. If you feel that the situation is not being handled appropriately, consider contacting an outside organization, such as the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) or California Civil Rights Department (CRD), for further assistance.

photo of sexual harassment at work, office woman employee who needs a sexual harassment attorney san diego and her lustful boss, abuse

Remember that no one deserves to be sexually harassed, and you have the right to a safe and respectful workplace. Taking action to address sexual harassment can help create a safer workplace for everyone.

Attorney Corey Hanrahan of the Hanrahan Firm has helped numerous employees pursue sexual harassment claims. If you have been subjected to any form of unlawful harassment at work, contact The Hanrahan Firm for a free consultation. 

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