In light of the #MeToo movement, many victims now have the confidence to come forward with sexual harassment allegations. Though individuals stepping forward is positive, the complaints can prove to be a serious source of liability for many companies, which is why all companies should consider steps for sexual harassment prevention.
Sexual Harassment in The Workplace
Whether sexual harassment in the workplace has increased, or if we are just seeing an increase in reported incidents is difficult to determine. Regardless, sexual harassment has no place in the workplace. To prevent sexual harassment and its claims, employers will need to adopt prevention strategies. These include:
- Implementing a clear policy. All workplaces should have a written policy that clearly dictates sexual harassment is not allowed or tolerated and advises employees how to report sexual harassment.
- Providing adequate training. Sexual harassment training is extremely important and can go a long way toward preventing harassment in the workplace. While some companies only provide this training to managers, it is extremely beneficial for all workers.
- Having open communication with employees. Employees need to feel they have a safe work environment where they can report harassment. They need to feel comfortable reporting incidents to management.
- Knowing how to handle complaints. Any sexual harassment complaint needs to be handled delicately. Many employers rely on internal investigations, but these matters are best left to more qualified outside parties who will not be biased.
- Establishing a professional work environment. Employers need to set a tone for their work environment focused on professionalism and respect which has the added benefit of fostering positive relationships.
Sexual Harassment Claims Should Be Taken Seriously
An employer should take an employee’s sexual harassment claim very seriously. These matters can quickly snowball out of control and could become extremely costly. Prevention is the best way to protect businesses from harassment claims. You don’t want to wait until it’s too late to implement preventative measures.
Get Help Defending Sexual Harassment Claims
If your company does not have preventative strategies in place for sexual harassment, don’t wait to speak to the experienced employment lawyers at MehaffyWeber. We can help you both prepare for and reduce harassment claims. If you are already facing sexual harassment claims, we can also advise you on the best course of legal action while protecting your interests. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.