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sexual harassment at work Archives

Companies may think twice about giving workers alcohol

A NizNik Behavioral Health surveyed 1,010 full-time employees who worked for companies that allowed them to drink in the office or at company events. Of those surveyed, 45 percent discouraged them from drinking at all. This is because Florida employers and others could be exposed to legal liability related to actions taken after employees consume alcohol. According to the survey, drinking was most likely to take place during holiday parties.

Authority over others defines employer sexual harassment

Sexual harassment can take several forms at workplaces in Florida, but employer sexual harassment refers specifically to inappropriate behavior by authority figures directed at subordinates. A business owner, member of management or a supervisor who makes sexual advances, physical contact or lewd comments could create a hostile environment for workers. Even employees who are not targeted by the sexual comments might feel that they have to condone the behavior or risk their jobs.

Facing sexual harassment at work

Unfortunately, many Florida workers continue to face a range of harassment problems on the job. Even some of the country's most well-regarded employers have seen serious issues with sexual harassment come to the forefront. For example, Google staff members engaged in a global walkout to protest the lack of attention paid to harassment and discrimination, especially that directed against female employees. Some types of harassment are more severe and obvious, especially to outside observers, while other types of unacceptable behavior may often go unnoticed.

New thoughts on harassment-prevention training

Awareness about sexual harassment has gone up significantly since 2016. In the same year, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission released a report showing that workplace training designed to reduce sexual harassment may actually do more harm than good. As a result, companies in Florida and other states are rethinking the substance of their anti-sexual harassment training programs.

Lawsuit accuses Google executives of ignoring harassment

The #MeToo movement has drawn attention to ongoing issues with sexual harassment and assault in a range of industries in Florida and across the country. While the resulting employee protests and media coverage have led to some policy changes, many say that not enough has been done to put a stop to on-the-job harassment. In a lawsuit filed on Jan. 10, a shareholder with Alphabet, Google's parent company, accused the tech giant's executives of ignoring problems with harassment.

Employee activists raise awareness on social media

Google employees are hoping to raise awareness of workplace harassment in the tech industry using various social media channels such as Twitter and Instagram. They hope that people in Florida and throughout the country learn more about tactics such as requiring employees to resolve workplace issues through arbitration. By going through arbitration, workers don't have the ability to take a case to court. While this requirement has been dropped by some companies for sexual harassment claims, it still applies in other cases.

Ending harassment is a group effort

Workers in Florida may have either experienced or heard about sexual harassment at work. However, it is a problem that both employees and employers can work together to solve. Employees should document any instance of harassment that they see or experience. Doing so may make it easier to have a claim investigated after it has been reported to HR or the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

Harassment victims likely to face firing or retaliation

When Florida workers face sexual harassment on the job, many are afraid to take action to stop the unwanted advances. These fears of losing a job or other forms of retaliation could be well-founded. According to a university study, most workers who come forward with complaints about sexual harassment are fired or experience some form of unjust treatment on the job shortly thereafter. The Center for Employment Equity reported that 64 percent of harassment complainants lost their jobs within one year of making their claim.

How employment contracts may limit employee rights

Employees in Florida and throughout the country may be unable to tell their stories of sexual harassment in the workplace. This is because many employment contracts require workers to take their cases to arbitration. Once an arbitration case is resolved, there is no chance to appeal the decision to a higher court or any other body. Employers may also have the right to keep information away from employees prior to an arbitration hearing.

Unions in entertainment industry team up against harassment

Many people in Pennsylvania and across the country have been appalled by the sexual harassment revelations that have been widely publicized in the entertainment industry. Spurred by allegations of harassment and assault against major movie producer Harvey Weinstein in late 2017, the #MeToo movement has revealed numerous examples of serious harassment, often carried out by well-known figures in the entertainment industry as well as politics, tech and other fields. Now, trade unions in entertainment have launched a new alliance in order to strengthen the battle against sexual harassment in the workplace.

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