The EEOA (Equal Employment Opportunity Act) put forth some guidelines in order to identify sexual harassment.
Under these guidelines there are two major forms of sexual harassment:
- Quid Pro Quo – This Latin term literally means “something for something”. Under Quid Pro Quo, sexual harassment occurs when an employee (of any gender) must put up with sexual advances to protect or maintain their a) job b) promotion c) wage increase d) favorable performance evaluation.
- Hostile Environment - Sometimes there isn’t a clear “exchange” of sexual favors for job security or promotion. That doesn’t mean that sexual harassment isn’t occurring. If a sexually demeaning and hostile work environment is created, that is also sexual harassment. Methods of creating a sexually demeaning work environment include repeated sexual comments, jokes, posters of nude women (or men), innuendo, and cat calls/shouting. Systematic sexual comments are discriminatory and create a hostile environment for workers.
The best steps to take to report sexual harassment are to tell your immediate supervisor and Human Resources (HR). In the case that the sexual harassment is perpetrated by your boss, go to their superior or straight to HR. If you are discouraged by your boss or HR to file a complaint, keep in mind that you have the right to file such a complaint and the corporation can be taken to court for refusing to address the situation.
“Prevention” is the most excellent tool to eradicate sexual harassment in the office. Employers are expected to take necessary steps in order to avoid sexual harassment from happening. Administration should evidently convey to every officemates/employees that sexual harassment will not be tolerated. They can do so by set up an effective complaint or grievance process and taking urgent and proper action when an employee complains.
Have you ever experienced sexual harassment? Did you successfully report it? Share your experiences and I hope this post has been beneficial & insightful.
“Know the Signs and Identify Sexual Harassment”
“What is Sexual Harassment”