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How Should Your Employer Handle a Sexual Harassment Claim?

Enduring sexual misconduct from a co-worker or supervisor at work is stressful on its own. When someone also worries that their employer will punish them for speaking up, it can severely affect their morale and job performance.

Workers should be able to trust that their employers will comply with federal law if they make a report regarding sexual harassment. Whether you have faced quid pro quo harassment from a manager using a performance review to solicit a date or a hostile work environment created by rude co-workers, how should your employer handle your complaint?

They should give you a safe way to report

One of the most important means of deterring workplace sexual misconduct is a fair and simple reporting system. Your employee handbook should provide you with information about how you can report your experience to your employer, including in situations where a supervisor has harassed you.

They should investigate seriously

Even if you are a new hire making an accusation against an executive, the company should treat the complaint as something serious. They should record your concerns and do their best to investigate without disrupting your job. If they substantiate your claims, they should inform you of that, as well as how they intend to remedy the situation.

They should not retaliate against you

You should not have to lose your job, get transferred to another department or face hostel co-workers because you don’t want to deal with workplace sexual harassment. If your employer does not handle your complaint properly, you may need to take legal action against the business for failing to protect your right. Speaking up about sexual harassment can be a frightening experience but also a way to protect yourself and others.

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