5 Ways You Could Have Been Sexually Harassed in the Workplace
While a whopping 81-percent of women have experienced sexual harassment in the workplace, sometimes it isn’t so easily defined. Thus, it isn’t uncommon for sexual harassment to go dismissed. But the main issues with letting sexual harassment go is that it may continue, and worst of all, it may happen to other current and future employees in the near future.
In response to sexual harassment, affected employees might become uncomfortable at work, suffer from lower concentration and productivity on the job, and may even be at risk for developing mental health disorders from anxiety to depression.
If any of the following are relevant to you, you may be able to receive compensation for sexual harassment:
1. You were bribed or requested for sexual favors:
Being bribed or asked for sexual favors is usually what most classify as sexual harassment. This can include a boss asking for sex in return for a pay raise or a co-worker asking you to send nude pictures or else they’ll sabotage your job.
Unfortunately, many don’t speak out about these issues and may even give into these favors because they fear they will lose their job or have their paycheck withheld.
2. You were told sexist remarks:
Whether directed towards you, your sex in general, or even the opposite sex, sexist remarks fall under the category of sexual harassment. However, many may feel that sexist remarks are only able to be worked with by an attorney if they are extreme. Thus, most tend to overlook sexist remarks if they believe their coworker or boss was trying to be sarcastic or funny.
3. Someone inappropriately touched you:
An inappropriate touch is hard to define. For some cultures, a kiss on the cheek is completely normal. However, others may find it unprofessional and even disturbing. Additionally, the one touching, as well as the one being touched, may have a different idea of what the touch implies. Nevertheless, it is usually you that decides if a touch was inappropriate.
Additionally, know that Inappropriate touching can be a one time or repeating instance. The severity of the touch(es) can vary drastically.
4. The way you dress dramatically changed how you are treated:
If your boss or co-worker mistreats you or acts inappropriately when you dress a certain way to work (e.g., showing cleavage or arm muscles, wearing tighter clothing), you might have a legal case on your hands. Additionally, if your boss or co-worker suggests or requires, for instance, that you wear a short skirt and low-cut shirt to work, this would also be sexual harassment.
5. You were treated differently due to your gender:
Generally, being treated differently because of your gender, whether with good or bad intentions, can qualify as sexual harassment. For example, this can include being given lower pay or hours or being verbally spoken to differently due to your gender. You may notice that the opposite gender in your place of work is treated in a completely different way.
If you believe you are or have been sexually harassed at work, reach out to sexual harassment attorneys to confirm your potential qualification for legal compensation.
Sexual harassment in the workplace is a very real issue that affects both women and men of all ages. However, many fear speaking up, especially if they believe someone will belittle their case. But reaching out to an attorney can be your best route to ensuring a safer workplace not just for you but for other employees at your place of work.