No one should be expected to put up with harassment at work. It’s against federal law. No one in the workplace, including contractors, is permitted to harass another person. Harassment is prohibited based upon race, religion, sex, age, national origin, disability and other criteria. It may be advisable to discuss the situation with an Employment Attorney in New Iberia LA.
There are two basic types of harassment.
Quid Pro Quo
Quid Pro Quo or “This for That” harassment is most commonly seen in cases of sexual harassment. A supervisor or another in a position of authority will make employment decisions or treat the worker in a particular way based upon the worker’s allowing unwelcome conduct, typically sexual in nature. The harasser may be very obvious in the demand or more subtle, but either is illegal. Workers may need the job so badly that they feel compelled to submit.
Some examples of Quid Pro Quo harassment include:
• Denying a promotion to a subordinate who refuses to allow sexual contact
• Making participation in religious activities a condition of employment or preferential treatment
Hostile Work Environment
Anyone can cause a hostile work environment, including co-workers, supervisors, contractors or customers. All that is required is that the unwelcome conduct creates an offensive, hostile or intimidating atmosphere.
Many things can create a hostile work environment including:
• Crude discussions of sexual activities or off-color jokes
• Indecent gestures or touching that is unnecessary
• Showing pictures that are sexually or racially insensitive
• Making comments about someone’s physical attributes
• Sabotaging work done by the victim
• Hostile physical conduct
What Determines Illegal Harassment?
There are two factors that determine when harassing conduct is in violation of the law.
• The conduct must be based upon the protected status of the victim (age, sex, race etc.) and unwelcome.
• The conduct must be considered abusive by the victim and sufficiently severe and pervasive that a reasonable person would find the conduct abusive or hostile.
Responding to workplace harassment
Deciding what to do can be very difficult.
• First, understand that you have legal rights.
• Don’t quit, as this will make it more difficult to file a discrimination claim.
• Write down everything that happened.
• Notify your employer immediately.
It would also be advisable to consult an Employment Attorney in New Iberia LA. Chris Richard is an attorney with more than 25 years of legal and medical experience. To schedule a consultation to discuss your legal options, visit chrisrichardattorney.com.
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