How to Deal With Sexual Harassment in Your Workplace
Nobody should have to deal with sexual harassment in the workplace, but sadly, it’s more prevalent than many of us would like to think.
Being a victim of sexual harassment can leave long-term psychological scars. No matter what form of sexual harassment somebody is exposed to, it can impact them for the rest of their life.
Women are more likely to experience sexual harassment in the workplace than men, although it can impact anybody. Often, the harassment is enough to make an employee leave their job and find work elsewhere.
For many victims of sexual harassment, the thought of speaking up is scary. Many women and men are scared to report the perpetrator in case it causes the issue to get worse.
You must take action if you’re being sexually harassed in the workplace. Doing so will stop the issue and allow you to continue working in a comfortable environment where you don’t feel threatened.
Here are some key steps you should take if you are being sexually harassed at work.
Sometimes, people don’t realize their actions are offensive, intimidating, or unwanted. They might even think that you’re enjoying their sexual comments and advances.
Simply asking the person to stop what they’re doing and telling them that you’re uncomfortable with their behavior can sometimes do the trick. The person might immediately back off, and the harassment could stop there.
Inform Your Manager
If you’ve asked the individual to stop harassing you and their sexually suggestive comments or unwanted advances have continued, you’ll need to escalate the issue.
Inform a senior staff member, such as your manager or HR leader, about the issue. As awful as it might be to relive your traumatic experiences, it’s important to provide as much detail as possible about the sexual harassment you have been through.
You’ll need to tell your senior about what has happened and where every incident occurred. If there were any witnesses, they might need to provide statements to confirm your report.
Reporting sexual harassment will be much easier if you’ve documented every incident. Making a note of everything that has happened to you will make it easier for your manager to take action. It will come in handy if you decide to hire a sexual harassment lawyer later down the line.
Hire a Sexual Harassment Lawyer
If, after reporting the issue to your manager or HR department, the harassment continues, you should take legal action. For this, you will need to hire a lawyer specializing in sexual harassment.
Your lawyer will review the details of every incident and collate it into a strong case they will use to represent you in court. They will also interview witnesses and gather more information to strengthen your case.