No one should have to experience unwanted harassment in the workplace. Unfortunately, sexual harassment often occurs to people of all genders and in many different forms.
California law considers sexual harassment to be any inappropriate conduct motivated by sex or gender. To count as sexual harassment, the behavior must be unwanted, pervasive, and targeted. Often behavior that qualifies as sexual harassment falls under one or more of the following categories:
California labor laws identify two main types of sexual harassment in the workplace:
Unfortunately, sexual harassment can take many forms and range from subtle, hard-to-identify behaviors to blatant direct action. For instance, all of the actions in the list below are examples of sexual harassment. Bear in mind that sexual harassment could appear in other similar forms. Consulting a Los Angeles, CA sexual harassment attorney is the most effective way to evaluate if you have experienced sexual harassment.
You should speak to an experienced sexual harassment attorney right away if you’ve experienced sexual harassment in any form or suffered consequences such as getting fired for refusing to engage in sexual behavior. Your lawyer will respectfully evaluate if sexual harassment occurred and help you understand your legal options moving forward.
A: In California, any unwelcome policy or behavior on the basis of sex, gender, race, or religion is considered harassment. Sexual harassment, in particular, involves any unwanted sexual advances, physical content, inappropriate messages or comments about someone’s appearance or sexual activity, or requests for sexual behavior.
A: The behaviors constituting harassment must be unwanted, continued, and targeted. If a person asks the person harassing them to stop after one incident, and the behavior does, in fact, stop, it likely will not qualify as sexual harassment. However, severely isolated incidences of harassment, particularly quid pro quo sexual harassment, often still qualify. If you’re wondering if a specific experience qualifies as sexual harassment, a lawyer can help you figure it out.
A: The punishment for sexual harassment will vary based on the precise context of the case. However, in the case of quid pro quo harassment, the company will often have to provide financial compensation to the person who was harassed.
A: All employers in California are required to have sexual harassment policies and methods for handling sexual harassment. The exact way an HR department will handle a violation of that policy will vary based on the workplace, but typically HR will investigate the sexual harassment claim and enact disciplinary action for those violating sexual harassment policies,
You shouldn’t have to handle sexual harassment alone. Consulting a capable legal team can help put an end to the harassment and help you and others feel comfortable at work. At Clark Employment Law, APC, we understand how complicated and distressing it can be to experience sexual harassment in the workplace, and we know that you may feel pressure to stay silent. But the safest way forward is to seek legal action so the harassment comes to an end for good and those involved are held accountable for their horrible actions. Contact us today to get the support you deserve.