Your Rights as an Employee: Understanding Workplace Harassment Laws
No one should have to endure workplace harassment. Unfortunately, it remains a prevalent problem in many workplaces. Fortunately, there are laws in place to protect employees from workplace harassment.
In this guide, we’ll explain your rights as an employee when it comes to workplace harassment laws, and how you can protect yourself from harassment in the workplace.
What is Workplace Harassment?
Workplace harassment is any unwelcome conduct that is based on a protected characteristic such as race, gender, religion, age, or disability, and that creates a hostile or intimidating work environment. It can take many forms, including verbal or physical abuse, threats, and intimidation.
Workplace harassment can occur between employees or between an employee and their supervisor or manager. Regardless of who the harasser is, it’s important to know that workplace harassment is illegal and there are laws in place to protect you.
Understanding Your Rights as an Employee
As an employee, you have the right to work in an environment that is free from harassment. Under federal and state law, harassment is illegal, and employers have a responsibility to prevent it from occurring in the workplace.
If you are being harassed at work, it’s important to understand your rights and know what you can do to protect yourself.
Here are some key things to keep in mind:
- You Have the Right to Report Harassment
If you are experiencing workplace harassment, you have the right to report it to your employer or to the appropriate government agency. You cannot be retaliated against for reporting harassment, and your employer is legally required to take steps to address the situation.
- You Have the Right to File a Complaint
If your employer fails to address the harassment, you have the right to file a complaint with the appropriate government agency, such as the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). The agency will investigate the complaint and take appropriate action if necessary.
- You Have the Right to Legal Action
If you have been harassed at work and your employer has failed to take action to address the situation, you have the right to pursue legal action. This may include filing a lawsuit against your employer or the person who harassed you.
- You Have the Right to Confidentiality
If you report workplace harassment, you have the right to confidentiality. Your employer is required to keep your report confidential to the extent possible while still investigating the situation and taking appropriate action.
- You Have the Right to Protection Against Retaliation
If you report workplace harassment, your employer cannot retaliate against you for doing so. This includes firing, demoting, or otherwise punishing you for reporting harassment.
Steps to Take if You Are Experiencing Workplace Harassment
If you are experiencing workplace harassment, it’s important to take action to protect yourself. Here are some steps you can take:
- Report the Harassment
Report the harassment to your employer as soon as possible. Be sure to document the harassment, including the date, time, and any witnesses.
- Keep a Record of the Harassment
Keep a record of the harassment, including any emails, notes, or other documentation. This will be helpful if you need to file a complaint or pursue legal action.
- Seek Support
If you are experiencing workplace harassment, it can be helpful to seek support from friends, family, or a therapist. You may also want to consider joining a support group for people who have experienced workplace harassment.
- Know Your Rights
Educate yourself about your rights as an employee and the laws that protect you from workplace harassment. This will help you understand what actions you can take to protect yourself.
- Consult with an Attorney
If you are considering legal action against your employer or the person who harassed you, it’s important to consult with an attorney who specializes in employment law. They can help you understand your legal options and guide you through the legal process.
How Mike Christensen Can Help You
If you are experiencing workplace harassment, Mike Christensen can provide invaluable legal assistance and guidance. With their experienced workplace harassment attorneys in Columbus, OH, Mike Christensen can help you understand your rights as an employee and take action to protect yourself from harassment in the workplace. We can guide you through the legal process, from reporting the harassment to your employer to pursuing legal action if necessary. If you’re looking for a Columbus workplace harassment lawyer, contact Mike Christensen for a free consultation.