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Understanding Sexual Harassment | Sexual Harassment

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Published on Sep 5, 2014

What is Sexual Harassment?
Sexual Harassment explained.
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The law defines sexual harassment as unwelcome verbal, visual, or physical conduct of a sexual nature that is severe or pervasive and affects working conditions or creates a hostile work environment.

“Conduct of A Sexual Nature” is broken into 3 parts. Verbal, Visual and Physical. Verbal sexual harassment includes comments about clothing, a person’s body; sexual or gender-based jokes or remarks; requesting sexual favors or repeatedly asking a person out; sexual innuendos; threats, spreading rumors about a person’s personal or sexual life; or foul and obscene language

Visual sexual harassment includes posters, drawings, pictures, screensavers, cartoons, emails or text of a sexual nature. Physical sexual harassment includes assault; impeding or blocking movement; inappropriate touching such as kissing, hugging, patting, stroking, or rubbing, sexual gesturing or even leering or staring.

There are two categories of sexual harassment: The first is Quid pro quo, which literally means "this for that" It occurs when a boss uses job rewards, such as raises or promotions or punishment, such as demotions or firing to force employees into a sexual relationship or sexual act. This is sexual harassment.

The second is Hostile environment, which is defined as conduct that unreasonably interferes with work performance or creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work environment. For example, it may be sexual harassment if repeated sexual comments makes someone so uncomfortable that their work performance suffers or they decline professional opportunities because it will put them in contact with the harasser.

In both types of sexual harassment, employees must prove that the conduct was offensive to someone, not necessarily the intended victim of the sexual harassment,

Here is an example: Say a male employee tells a dirty joke to a female co-worker. She thinks it's funny, but a second woman passing by finds it offensive. That joke could contribute to a hostile environment claim simply because someone finds it offensive.
There are two conditions that determine liability for employers in cases of hostile environment sexual harassment:

The employer knew or should have known about the sexual harassment, and The employer failed to take appropriate corrective action.

Having a sexual harassment training program as well as a clear procedure for reporting harassment claims can shield employers from expensive lawsuits.

Visit us at www.turnkeydoc.com for more tips on how to prevent sexual harassment, training materials, as well as a complete library of company policy and procedures. Don’t forget to subscribe to our youtube channel for free video tips every month!

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Sexual Harassment
Sexual Harassment Training

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