If you are being sexually harassed at your workplace, you will need to document any comments or propositions that you receive, report the harassment to your manager or human resources representative, and hire an experienced employment attorney to help you with the process.
At first glance, this might seem like a lot to take in. As such, it is probably a good idea to look at each step individually.
Document the Evidence
It is vital that you gather as much evidence as possible before reporting your sexual harassment concerns to anyone. This helps to ensure that your harasser does not have a chance to delete or destroy the proof before you can present it to your employer.
Generally speaking, you will want to compile a collection of texts, emails, instant messages, and other communications that include instances of quid pro quo harassment or comments that are creating a hostile working environment for you. All of these forms of harassment are illegal.
Of course, once you have put all of your evidence together, you must keep it in a safe place until you can present it to the necessary parties. This means that you absolutely should not store them in your drawer at work or on your employer’s computer. Instead, keep them in a secure location in your home or on your personal computer.
Report the Harassment
Once you have gathered all of your evidence, you will need to report the harassment to your employer. In most cases, this will mean speaking to your manager or human resources representative. However, you should always check your employee handbook to ensure that you are complaining to the right person.
Having made your report, you will then need to give your employer a chance to rectify the situation. Legally speaking, this does not mean that they must fire your harasser. They only need to make the harassment stop. If they are unable or unwilling to do so, you will need to take things to the next step.
Hire an Experienced Employment Lawyer
Dealing with sexual harassment in the workplace is never easy. However, it can be a lot more straightforward when you have the help of an experienced employment attorney. Though a lawyer only becomes a necessity if your employer refuses to act on your complaint, you can, of course, hire one at any point of the process if you need additional guidance.
Your attorney will be able to help you address your employer’s inaction. This assistance can be as simple as a strongly worded letter or as complex as a lengthy legal battle on your behalf. Whatever action is necessary to settle the matter to your satisfaction, your lawyer will take it.