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Bartender? What to do when your boss thinks you should be shaking him

Shaken, not stirred. It's a recipe for the perfect (Bond) martini. Up, on the rocks, doubles, straight--you know your job and you do it well. Five deep waiting at the bar? No worries. You can swipe a card, pour a drink and tap a beer, while still carrying on a conversation.

You love your work--it's fast, its keeps you fit and if you ever need extra money, you can just pick up a shift. Except--except for your boss. His admiration has gone from professional to prurient and you've had enough. One more crass remark about your behind and you're going to walk. Well, you'd like to--but you can't: You've got one more year to finish your degree and you have a kid at home. Is there anything you can do but suck it up?

How you can get help

You signed on as a bartender, you did not sign on to be leered at by your boss. Just because you agreed to the scanty uniform does not mean you agreed to be ogled--or worse. You have the right to a workplace where you don't have to choose between your morals and your money. Sexual Harassment is real and it is against the law.

What can you do?

You don't have to give up your livelihood. If you feel at all uncomfortable with remarks from your boss or other co-workers, you do have someone you can talk with: An experienced employment law attorney. Employment law encompasses everything from illegal termination to disability claims. And within those boundaries falls sexual harassment.

It is, plain and simple, illegal for your boss to make suggestive remarks, touch you, make sexual jokes, stare at you, whistle at you, show you sexual pictures, post sexual cartoons, ask you about your love-life, comment on your boyfriend, send you suggestive texts or in any other way create a hostile work environment.

If you ask your boss to stop and your hours are suddenly reduced, you've been moved to the slow or day shifts when you had previously been working nights and weekends, or your boss terminates you, you very likely have a case. And you should pursue it.

There is no reason you should have to tolerate inappropriate, and more importantly, illegal, behavior simply because you work in a bar. It is NOT okay, it is NOT expected, and it does NOT "go with the job." Protect yourself and your future--if you are the victim of sexual harassment, contact an attorney to see how they can help.

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