The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is in charge of enforcing laws that apply to all aspects of the working world, including recruitment, termination, advancement, harassment, training, compensation, and benefits. Those who have been subjected to such discrimination are likewise protected by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
What does it mean to be sexually harassed?
The term “sexual harassment” (Sexual Harassment – Definition, Examples, Cases, Processes (legaldictionary.net)) refers to any unwelcome sexual approaches made in a working environment. The phrase “quid pro quo,” which literally means “this for that,” refers to one kind of sexual harassment. Most individuals have this image in their heads whenever they consider sexual harassment. These are circumstances in which the provision of sexual favors is a prerequisite for employment activity. “If you don’t sleep with me, I’ll fire you” is a classic example of sexual harassment in exchange for sexual favors.
The creation of a “hostile work environment” is the second kind of sexual harassment that may occur. When coworkers around you create an atmosphere at work that contains inappropriate sexual material, this is an example of a hostile work environment. It is possible that a “hostile work environment” may be created for female workers in the workplace if, for instance, an employee uploads images of women in swimsuits on the company’s intranet.
It is quite possible that there will be sexual harassment. As we are now witnessing in the media, sexual harassment is an issue that impacts many fields, including the corporate world, politics, and the media. Because this information is, for the most part, kept classified, the general public is often not aware of how frequently these instances occur. It’s true that most human resources departments are bombarded with complaints.
It is reasonable to assume that there will be one allegation of sexual harassment filed each year for every fifty workers in the company. It is probable that you may get a complaint during the next five years if you have ten workers or more.
You are better protected if you keep a record of complaints
Avoiding the issue of sexual harassment is the number one error that managers make in this area. As a manager, you may have seen several people reject complaints without recording the complaint or their reasoning for dismissing the complaint. Click here for more information on formally documenting a complaint. Consider the scenario in which a worker expresses concern that she would like not to coordinate her schedule with another employee. What should you say or do about the fact that he is persistently trying to set her up on dates despite the fact that this behavior is causing her discomfort?
Sexual harassment complaints should be handled with the utmost importance, even if they seem trivial. Even if a complaint is documented, this does not guarantee that the behavior in question constitutes harassment. It allows the manager to keep track of the facts, such as whether or not there is sufficient evidence to infer that harassment happened.
Keep in mind that it is not just the manager’s responsibility to defend the company but also the individuals who are engaged in it. It is thus in your best interest to keep a record of such instances, regardless of how trivial they may seem, rather than dismissing them out of hand.
Find a solution to any potential problems with harassment before making any accommodations
Well-meaning managers sometimes change employees’ shifts or schedules to try to solve a harassment complaint, but this could be seen as retaliation against an employee who made a complaint. As stated before, the first thing that has to be done is record the complaint. After this has been completed, you should collaborate with the other parties involved to find a solution to the problem.
The following is an illustration of some of the methods that you may take to address the problem:
Conducting an investigation into the allegation in a quick and comprehensive manner, while maintaining the anonymity of persons concerned to the greatest extent possible. A simple one-on-one interview with the people involved and any possible witnesses may provide all the information needed to conduct an inquiry.
Depending on the findings, either reprimanding the harasser or compelling them to attend some kind of education, training for harassment, and/or counseling might be in order.
Informing the individual who is the subject of the investigation that they are not allowed to take any kind of retaliatory action against the person who filed the complaint is required.
Keeping a record of the investigation as well as the actions performed.
It is essential that you keep a record of each of these processes. Putting an end to the problem and making your working environment better may often be accomplished by doing any one of these measures.