Harassment and discrimination are two things no worker should have to deal with. In today’s economy, work can be a struggle for many and continued employment should not have to depend upon suffering through or tolerating illegal behavior. In the Michigan workplace, sexual harassment is a real problem and can make going to work a horrendous experience for the person on the receiving end. Moreover, sexual harassment can present real problems for employers who want to ensure their workplace is safe, positive and productive.
Often, workers in Michigan don’t learn about sexual harassment until they experience it. It’s important to define sexual harassment so that victims can obtain the legal help they need and harassers or employers can be held accountable. What is sexual harassment? The answer to this question can take many forms, and consulting with a Michigan employment law attorney can provide a thorough response. In general, sexual harassment is unwanted and unwelcome sexual advances, usually accompanied by some form of threat such as the threat of getting fired if the victim does not submit or tolerate the advances.
In order to help define sexual harassment, it’s helpful to have many examples. According to the Michigan Department of Civil Rights, illegal sexual harassment can range from a sexual assault to inappropriate sexual comments which create a hostile work environment. Sexual harassment can also take the form of showing inappropriate or explicit photos or cartoons to workers, sexual jokes, comments regarding a worker’s appearance or sexuality and much more.
Sexual harassment often involves threats or favors, such as the harasser threatening to fire, demote or do something harmful to the victim if the victim reports the behavior. In addition, sexual harassment can entail a worker asking another worker or customer for sexual favors and threatening the victim if they do not comply. This example can also be found in landlord-tenant relationships, teacher-student relationships and many more in which the harasser has some sort of power over the victim.
Sexual harassment in the Michigan workplace is a widespread issue and can affect any worker at any level of profession. Moreover, sexual harassment can occur to both women and men and may be from someone of the same gender. An employment law attorney can offer legal advice to locals affected by discrimination, sexual harassment, wrongful termination and other common yet harmful workplace issues.
Source: The Michigan Department of Civil Rights, “Sexual and Other Forms of Discriminatory Harassment,” accessed June 25, 2016