If you believe you are being sexually harassed at work, or if you believe someone you know is, you or they may be suffering in silence because of the fear of retaliation on the part of your employer. While you may know that retaliation is illegal, there are numerous ways in which an employer may retaliate. Moreover, what if you have to go up against them in court and they have the ability to hire a formidable legal defense and you are left to face the consequences?
To assuage your fears, there are some things you should know about sexual harassment in the workplace. For instance, in order to eliminate sexual harassment on the job, it is important that steps are put into place by the company to effectively prevent sexual harassment from occurring. If you and other employees are not properly trained and an effective system is not in place for addressing grievances or complaints, your employer may have a harder time defending your claims.
When the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission investigates a claim, it will look at several factors. To come to the conclusion that harassment occurred, numerous circumstances may be present. But there are some factors that do not have to be present that are interesting to be aware of, for instance:
- You do not have to experience physical injury by the harasser.
- You do not have to lose your job before you have a case.
- Your harasser does not have to be of the opposite sex.
- It is best to show that not only were the advances undesired, you informed the offender of this fact. Also, you went through any process in place for filing a grievance at work regarding continued harassment.
If you or someone you know is suffering, it does no one any good to remain quiet or to live in fear of retaliation. There is help available. The best thing you may ever do is to lend your voice to the advocacy against this unacceptable and illegal behavior. You can do so by contacting a local Indiana attorney well versed in employment law to speak directly to your friend or to you.