What workers should do if they are sexually harassed

Many workers in Wisconsin are sexually harassed by their employers, supervisors or coworkers. Workplace sexual harassment can take many different forms, and it can range from inappropriate comments to physical assault. Other forms of workplace sexual harassment include displays of pornographic images, sexual jokes, unwelcome touching and requests for sexual favors.

An employer who sexually harasses a worker or permits managers and supervisors to sexually harass a worker is accountable for the behavior. There are also many cases where an employer can be held accountable for acts of sexual harassment by an employee’s coworkers. Employers who are aware of sexual harassment that is going on in a work setting but do nothing to stop the behavior from continuing can be found liable for the victim’s damages.

Before victims of workplace sexual harassment can pursue a legal claim, they usually need to inform their employer about their concerns. Employee handbooks often contain policies on sexual harassment and instructions about who to report grievances to. If a worker decides to complain to supervisors about sexual harassment, it may be a good idea to complain in writing and retain a copy of the complaint. A person who is being sexually harassed at work should also keep documentation of the sexual harassment by writing down what is happening and saving any inappropriate texts or emails that have been received.

Federal and state employment laws provide protection against this type of harmful behavior. Victims may want to meet with an attorney to learn more about their rights.

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