Are you working in an environment that makes you uneasy or uncomfortable?  Do you hear jokes and language that you feel are not appropriate?  Do you dread going to work because of this?  Harassment of any type does not belong in the workplace.


Defining Harassment


Sexual harassment is one form of harassment and includes unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and a verbal or physical conduct that:


•A person feels he or she needs to do in order to keep a job. 

•A person feels he or she needs to do in order for raises or promotions. 

•Conduct that interferes with a person’s work performance because it creates an offensive work environment. 


Along with sexual harassment, there are other types. Harassment is verbal or physical conduct that creates hostility toward an individual because of that person's race, skin color, religion, gender, national origin, age, or disability, and that: 


•Creates an offensive work environment 

•Interferes with work production 

•Limits a person’s employment opportunities 


What Does This Mean?


This can include slurs, negative stereotyping, intimidation, crude language, discussing sexual activities, using indecent gestures, sabotaging someone’s work, or any threats that relate to the categories listed above. 


Harassment can also be written or graphic material that shows aversion toward an individual, like sexually suggestive or racially insensitive.  These materials can be displayed on walls, bulletin boards and other locations throughout the workplace. 


Some important things to remember about harassment:


Both men and women can be victims of sexual harassment. 

•Either a man or a woman can be a harasser.  The employee who feels harassed against can be the same gender as the harasser (i.e. male harasser to another male employee.)

•A person can complain of harassment even if it wasn’t directed at him or her.  It can be directed at another person but someone else was affected by this conduct. 

•Harassment doesn’t always have to happen at work.  It can occur at company-sponsored events or between coworkers away from work. 

•Harassment situations can be peer-to-peer, supervisor-to-employee or even a third-party-to employee (such as a customer or vendor.)

Prevention is best to remove harassment from the workplace.  All employers are encouraged to complete training and other appropriate steps to prevent harassment.


If you feel you have been harassed and need an opinion to determine if you have a case, give AA Legal a call today.  We are here for you.