Expert Advice For Dealing With Workplace Sexual Harassment
Even one incident of sexual harassment is enough to scar a person for a long time mentally. When it happens for a prolonged period, the impact is unimaginable. It can disrupt the victim’s professional life and even cause them to acquire conditions like depression and anxiety.
If you have experienced sexual harassment, you may be filled with annoyance or devastation. When the situation starts getting out of hand, you must start taking a few steps towards justice. Perhaps the most crucial step is contacting a sexual harassment lawyer in Austin, TX, and getting your case evaluated.
Expert advice for dealing with workplace sexual harassment
- Determine if the conduct was indeed sexual harassment.
Sometimes when we are angry at someone for doing something that has offended us, we are not in our right minds and are not able to think straight. Before you reach out to HR to file a complaint, think hard about whether what they said was offensive or was just offensive to you.
For example, a male colleague complimenting a female colleague about their dress at work is not sexual harassment, even if it upsets or angers the latter. If the woman feels offended or uncomfortable, they should ask the male colleague not to repeat such remarks.
The ideal way to find out whether you have a valid case is by discussing it with an attorney.
- Let the person know that you do not welcome this behavior.
The basis of a sexual harassment case is that the conduct is unwelcome. When you hear or see something offensive to you, ensure that you make it clear to the person doing it, if it is safe to do so. You could try saying something as simple as, “I do not like this behavior. It makes me feel unsafe at my workplace. Please stop doing it.”
You are allowed to repeat this if they do it again, but if they do not stop the behavior after the first time you warned them, you are free to file a complaint.
- Write a complaint letter to your company.
You can make the complaint in person. However, it is always good to write them an official email or letter for proof that you had indeed informed them of the situation. Make sure you write “Formal complaint of sexual harassment” as the subject line, so the receiver knows you want to discuss a serious matter and not a minor workplace inconvenience.
Make sure you include as many details of the incident as possible, including the date, time, location, the person who did it, witnesses, actions, etc.
Taking these steps should solve the problem for you. However, if it does not, it means your company is unwilling to help you. Nevertheless, you can always hire your own attorney.